Oldham Council has announced major upgrade and improvement plans for the historic Royton Town Hall in its latest regeneration scheme.
The works – set to start on site in 2018 – are the next step in the local authority’s commitment to redeveloping facilities in the district to improve and make them more accessible and fit-for-purpose for the community.
The refurbishment works will see Royton Library moving from its current location into the ground floor of the Royton Town Hall building.
The new library will be a modern, community venue which will preserve and make the most of the building’s historic features.
It will include modernised library facilities, meeting rooms and office space.
The plans also include remodelled open space to the rear of the building, better disabled access and improved connectivity between the library, health centre and leisure centre facilities.
The vacated library building will then be marketed as an attractive centrally-located commercial opportunity which will enable it to find a new modern use, and reduce running costs.
Jean Stretton, Oldham Council Leader, said: “This is excellent news for Royton and part of our long-standing commitment to improving the area for residents, partners and community groups.”
“The area has seen some positive improvements in recent years – like the fantastic new Royton sports centre and new retail in the district centre – but we must not stand still, despite our budget challenges.
“Our libraries are a hugely-important community asset and our continued investment in them demonstrates how valuable they are to residents.
“We’re ensuring Royton has a library fit for the 21st century and residents can look forward to having one with much improved facilities in the near future.
“This is a scheme that better meets the needs of the area, and also opens up the prospect of an exciting new use for the former library building. I thank ward councillors for their patience and for keeping this issue on the agenda.”
Royton Town Hall was purpose built for the local board in 1880 and is a municipal venue constructed in a free style of architecture including a domed roof and clock tower.
Royton Town Hall’s current occupants – Oldham Council’s District Team and Police Community Support Officers – will remain in the building while the work is taking place and there will be minimum disruption to services.
Occupants and community groups that currently use the building will be consulted before work takes place to understand their requirements.
Opportunities for residents to give their feedback on the proposals will be announced in the coming weeks.
Subject to planning consent, work will start on site in April 2018 and will take approximately 18 months.