Neyland councillors go head-to-head on library move plans

THE future of Neyland Library was top of the agenda at a meeting on Monday night.

The public were invited to have their say on whether the library, which currently shares a building with the town’s customer services centre, should be rehomed at the town’s new Athletic Club development.

As part of its transformation programme, Pembrokeshire County Council is looking at whether some of its services could be moved to new locations, in order to free up buildings and save money.

The authority has ranked every town in Pembrokeshire according to its population and geography, and is looking to distribute resources according to this ranking.

Neyland has been declared a ‘tier 3’ town by the council, alongside towns such as Narberth, St Davids and Saundersfoot.

The model proposes that tier 3 towns do not require dedicated contact centres, and libraries should either be closed, substituted with ‘mobile provision’, or replaces with a ‘community-based option’.

Cllr Paul Miller said he supports the proposals, as they would ensure Neyland keeps its library, albeit in a new home.

“By allowing the council to build an extension at the club to house the library, we could tie the county council in to providing a library for the town for the next 25 years,” he said.

A county spokesman said: “The Neyland meeting was held on Monday, and options for rationalising buildings to meet reducing budgets were explored as part of this engagement and consultation approach.

“A follow-up meeting is planned where there will be an opportunity to look at the library and other issues in Neyland in more detail.”

Cabinet is expected to decide the fate of the library in its last meeting of the year, in time for when work is due to start on the Athletic Club in February.