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Final preparations are underway for the new library opening in Castle House, Newcastle, later this month.

New library prepares for opening

Final preparations are underway for the opening of a new town centre library, which is part of a £15.4 million development.

Newcastle library is moving a few hundred yards from its current base on Ironmarket to the new Castle House civic hub next to Queens Gardens.

The current building, originally designed as a department store, will close at 6pm on Friday, July 6 before the library reopens in its new home at 9am on Monday, July 23.

Gill Heath, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet member for Communities, said:

The two week closure will allow thousands of books to be transferred and to prepare the computers, free wifi, digital touch tables, 3D printers and Raspberry Pi computers, which youngsters can use to practice coding and other IT skills.”

No-one with a book due for renewal during the closure period will be charged for being overdue, though if they do want to borrow more books they can visit another library at Silverdale, Knutton, Clayton, Audley, Kidsgrove, Talke, or Loggerheads.

The new library will be on the ground and first floors of four-storey Castle House, with a lift connecting the two.

Gill Heath said:

The new library will feel open and accessible with flexible space and offer access to more than one million books and more than 3,000 ebooks.

It will have a dedicated children’s area with a circus theme, space for accessing archive materials and the photographic collections of national museums and galleries, plus places for 37 PCs.

A similar move to a brand new space in Stafford in 2015 proved very popular and I believe this will be just as successful.”

The building will also be the base for Newcastle-under-Lyme Borough Council and services for Staffordshire County Council, Staffordshire Police and Aspire Housing’s customer services, as well as the Register Office.