Plans to axe library come under fire

PLANS to sell Milngavie Library and Community Education Centre have come under fire.

The Allander Road building is one of more than 50 properties which appeared on a hit list drawn up by East Dunbartonshire Council as part of its Strategic Asset Review.

Milngavie’s library and community education (CE) centre would be incorporated into a new ‘Milngavie Hub’, with its current site being sold off for residential development if the proposals are passed.

But there are worries about the plans as people say they say they will miss the facility.

Appalled

Joyce Allan (80) has lived in Bearsden for over 70 years, she said: “I am appalled to learn the council is considering closing Milngavie Library and CE Centre. It is very well used, the staff are extremely helpful and it is very easily accessed.

“I am disabled and luckily I can drive so I use the library as I can park easily and enter the building without any bother.

“I am also annoyed that Boclair House, formerly known as Buchanan Retreat, is on the hit list as it’s a beautiful building, much admired and is listed. It would be a shame if it was demolished.

“Why should it be Milngavie and Bearsden targeted, are there no other properties in East Dunbartonshire which could be sold to give the council the money they require?”

Diane Campbell, the council’s director of corporate and customer services, said: “The proposal to incorporate Milngavie Library into a Community Hub is part of the council’s wider asset investment strategy. Details for the hub will be worked into a comprehensive project plan after June 2012 and this will be done in consultation with the community.

“The plan will include the phasing of the project to ensure continuity of service. As the plan is for the library to be incorporated into the hub, the proposal would be for the original library to remain open until the hub is in place and a transition plan would be implemented to minimise disruption during the changeover period.

“The proposal is for the hub to house various public sector services including council, potentially health and police and voluntary sector services thus providing a truly joined up public service centre.

“As a result, customers will have much more choice in how they engage with the council and other agencies, making public services more accessible to all.”