Thousands to have say on controversial library plans

Have your say

COUNCILLORS criticised for an alleged lack of consultation over plans to move Halifax Central Library are giving the public another chance to have their say.

Critics have claimed that Calderdale Council has failed to have an open and transparent consultation process over the future of the Central Library.

Council leaders want to sell the Northgate House site and move the library and archive next to the Piece Hall.

Now, people are to be asked their opinion on several key questions.

The first involves whether to create a new library next to the Piece Hall

They will be asked to answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to the statement: “I would support the council’s plans so long as I am certain that the new library and archive will have the same or better facilities than the existing library.”

Another is: “I think we should keep the Central Library and Archives where they are” – also a yes or no answer.

There will be a question asking people to list in importance the development of a range of facilities in the town centre.

The council has already been asking people what they want to see in the proposed new central library and archive – those results will be used to develop the design and specification.

In the second phase of the consultation, the questions ask people for their opinion on where they think the central library and archive should be located.

The location of the Central Library and Archive has implications for plans to regenerate Halifax town centre and the council is asking questions about this as well.

Council leader Coun Janet Battye said: “This is one of the most significant consultations that we have ever undertaken in Calderdale and we want people to let us have their views.

“We have a vision for the future of Halifax which combines new retail, a new library, and the transformation of the Piece Hall. We are giving thousands of people the opportunity to have a real say about what they want to see.

“The latest questionnaire is to be made available which will ask people their opinion. To ensure that the consultation is fair and transparent, we will be asking people to give their names and addresses when giving us their views.”