Over the past year, Oundle Library has undertaken a new building project to revitalise an empty space in the garden.
The new shelter was named ‘The Cover’ following a competition run by the Friends of the Library. Its design offers a versatile environment to be used by both the library and local community groups.
Since the start of the pandemic, meeting in open spaces has become the safest means of interacting with groups. By creating a sheltered outdoor area, the library can now hold meetings more regularly, in any type of weather.
Some use of the outdoor space will generate income for the library through hire fees where a charge is appropriate.
The space was designed to encourage library-goers to make greater use of the garden, which also includes outdoor exercise equipment.
The Cover is currently being enjoyed by library patrons, and by organised children’s activities, reading groups, gardening events, and is even being hired for fitness sessions. Oundle Fringe plans to include the space as a venue in its festival programme.
The project had been planned for some time, with building work and preparations beginning in January 2021. The £45,000 project was entirely paid for by section 106 funding allocated by the county council in 2020 from housing developments in Oundle.
The allocated funding also provided for internal renovations and the purchasing of new fixtures to increase the internal capacity of the library so that a more flexible space for different group events within the community can be provided.