A PIONEERING new ‘one-stop-shop’ opened in Kirkintilloch this week – ushering in a new era for the library and public services.
Kirkintilloch Community Hub is based within the William Patrick Library building.
The library has been reduced in size, but books will still form a major part of the site . . . and it will still retain the William Patrick name.
Controversial plans were unveiled for the hub in April – sparking strident protests from campaigners concerned about the changes to the library.
More than 1,400 signed a petition against the £500,000 makeover.
Campaigners, including best-selling author Theresa Breslin, organised protests and called for a rethink.
However, the council stuck to its proposals and has now unveiled the hub.
Residents can get information and make payments for a wide range of council and East Dunbartonshire Leisure and Culture Trust services.
These include: council tax; benefits; payments; licensing; housing; general council enquiries; library services; leisure; and the arts.
The Kirkintilloch hub was officially opened on Monday – the same day as East Dunbartonshire Council’s new headquarters at Southbank Marina.
Commenting on the opening of the new community hub, council leader Rhondda Geekie said: “I’m absolutely delighted to open our very first Community Hub in Kirkintilloch.
“This really is a landmark event for the Council and East Dunbartonshire Leisure and Culture Trust.
“Bringing together a new state-of-the-art library with customer services under one roof marks the beginning of an exciting and innovative new way of delivering services more efficiently to our residents.
“It will also improve residents’ experience of dealing with the council and the trust and affords us significant savings, which in today’s challenging economic climate, can only be a good thing.”
Councillor Geekie added: “The hub’s bright and airy feel will surprise a lot of people. It’s a remarkable open plan space and I’m sure residents will be delighted with it and the new William Patrick Library.”
Councillor Stewart MacDonald, chairman of the East Dunbartonshire Leisure and Culture Trust, described the opening as a “very important day” for the trust, the council and the people of Kirkintilloch.
He added: “These fantastic new facilities reflect the commitment of the trust and the council in promoting library, leisure and cultural services in the town and I would urge everyone to come along and see for themselves just what has been created here.
“I’m sure local people will be suitably impressed.”
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