Plans for new library: “a shambles”

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CALDERDALE council’s botched attempts to win public support for a new library in Halifax have failed - again.

In a humiliating climbdown, the council’s Lib-Lab coalition had decided to begin the whole process again in June - a month after the council elections. But if there is a change of political power at the town hall in the May elections it might not take place at all.

Conservative councillors say they want the existing library to be restored rather a multi-million pound replacement built at the bottom side of the Piece Hall.

Coun Martin Peel (Con, Sowerby Bridge) said: “The whole process has been a shambles and a sham. I haven’t met anyone who feels the library and archives should be moved, because the existing building at Northgate is in an ideal location.”

The council’s Liberal Democrat leader Janet Battye said of the consultation so far: “perhaps we did it too quickly. It is important that we get this right and people feel we have been fair and that we have a proper process that starts and finishes between specific dates.” And Coun Barry Collins admitted that the consultation to date had been “badly handled.”