Pressure put on local authority to re-open Greenfield Library

GREENFIELD Library could be poised to re-open after 14 months in lockdown.

The Independent together with pressure from political parties has urged Oldham Council to allow residents back into the building on Chew Vale.

Greenfield is the only Saddleworth library, and one of the last in the borough, to remain shut.

The ongoing closure of the popular site has raised fears over its future. But the local authority insists it will make the facilities available to the public again.

Current Greenfield library

Saddleworth South councillor Jamie Curley said: “Hopefully it will reopen as the much-valued community asset that it is. I would certainly be opposed to any closure.”

Newly elected OMBC councillor and fellow Conservative Max Woodvine has also raised the issue with Town Hall bosses.

Liberal Democrat spokesperson Jeff Garner said: “Residents in Greenfield have felt like second class citizens for months and are outraged that Oldham Council has ignored them repeatedly.

“As well as books and audio books, Greenfield Library provides free access to computers, important to those who do not have such facilities, particularly those seeking jobs.”

The Independent has also championed the cause for the library’s re-opening. An OMBC spokesperson told us: “Our libraries, and staff, have played a vital role keeping our communities connected during the ongoing pandemic.

Greenfield Co-operative Society, library above the butcher’s shop

“Several of our staff are currently redeployed to support Covid response work including the PPE Hub, registrars and helpline.

“We also have some staff vacancies and our current aim is to recruit to these posts so we are in a position to open as many, if not all libraries by June 21.

“Other libraries are open across the borough and services are accessible online.”

Prior to moving to its current location, Greenfield library operated from a wooden hut, close to the King William IV pub, on Ladhill Lane. Greenfield Co-operative Society once operated a library above its butchers shop on Chew Valley Road.

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