Decision-makers urged to rethink library move
PUBLISHED: 16:40 11 November 2009 | UPDATED: 09:43 12 August 2010
A CONTROVERSIAL decision to relocate a library is one step closer to being given the go-ahead. Bromley council is proposing to move Orpington Library from its current premises in The Priory, in Church Hill, Orpington, to an office in The Walnuts, in Hig
A CONTROVERSIAL decision to relocate a library is one step closer to being given the go-ahead.
Bromley council is proposing to move Orpington Library from its current premises in The Priory, in Church Hill, Orpington, to an office in The Walnuts, in High Street, at a cost of £1.94million.
A spokesperson for the council said the plans were "agreed in principle" at a meeting of Bromley council's executive last Wednesday evening.
But residents have expressed concern about the plans, which they claim will give them a reduced service.
A letter sent to all councillors by Orpington resident Wendy Tung read: "I am very concerned about the planning application for the relocation of Orpington Library. The chief planner's recommendation is approval. The move, at an estimated cost of £1.94 million, would result in an inferior library service, inferior building premises for the library and the library moved to an unsuitable environment.
"It would also pave the way for the sell-off of the Grade II-listed medieval Priory building, which adjoins Priory Gardens, the town's park.
"I am writing to all councillors seeking support in my request to defer the decision on this application until the public has had an opportunity to engage in debate with the council on this important issue. The people of Orpington have been kept in the dark."
The plans will still be subject to planning permission and will have to be approved by a full council meeting on December 9, but last week's decision brings the project one step closer to fruition.
A Bromley council document states: "Detailed work on the design of the new library has commenced. The intention is that, once draft proposals have been prepared, funding approval will be sought from the executive with the aim to complete works in spring 2010.