Bromley Council are considering plans to move Beckenham Library to the Beckenham Public Halls (near Ask Pizza in Beckenham Town Centre). The current library site (conveniently located with the leisure centre) will then be developed for housing (46 flats). Full details of the proposal can be found here and in these key documents:
- Beckenham Library and Cultural VenuePART 1 REPORT TEMPLATE 27112019 Executive
- Appendix C – Feasibility study
It is likely that the library space will be smaller in the Public Halls and there will be a loss of space for public use (eg clubs etc that hire rooms that will be turned into library space). However, the opportunity for a refurbished library site in the town centre may be of benefit.
Copers Cope Councillors have advised they are supportive or the relocation of the Library to the Public Halls. They have said that there has been agreement for some time that the existing library building no longer meets the needs of the community. However, our Councillors do not appear to have consulted local people, certainly our residents association was not approached.
This plan is it its initial stages and there is still time for local people to have their say. At a Council meeting on 5th Nov Councillors approved the proposal. They agreed:
- To proceed to procurement for the appointment of a multi-disciplinary team, to develop a scheme for Beckenham Public Hall up to RIBA Stage 2 (Concept design) in the first instance, at an estimated cost of £70k.
- In principle to use the existing Beckenham Library site for housing. The approach taken to deliver the housing will depend on the outcome of the review being undertaken by Lambert Smith Hampton and any subsequent agreement of a housing delivery vehicle. This will be subject to a further report.
The next stage is approval at the Council Executive on 27 November 2019.
There has been much public opposition to the library closure in the existing building, exacerbated by the Councils failure to consult with local people. A petition has been set up at the link below, now has over 3000 signatures:
A local resident has set up a public meeting at 7.30pm 14 November 2019 at the Beckenham Public Halls. CCARA will be attending this meeting, as well as other community groups. Space is limited, but interested parties are welcome.
Let us know what you think
We keen for your views, we will make a representation to the Leader of the Council on behalf of our members. Please email any feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org.