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Page last updated at 12:48 GMT, Monday, 18 October 2010 13:48 UK
Harrogate library reopens
Harrogate library. Copyright: North Yorkshire County Council
The library has been completely modernised over the last two years

Harrogate's newly refurbished state of the art library has reopened to the public.

The building on Victoria Avenue has been closed for nearly two years and has undergone a complete transformation.

The work includes a £3.4 million extension funded by North Yorkshire County Council with funds from the National Lottery.

A temporary library was provided for the town whilst the work was underway.

Increased space

With more than 250sqm of additional space, the library now has a spacious layout with room to browse the 73,000 books on the shelves.

There is also increased space for local studies & family history and more seating areas.

Around a third of the books are new and there are also a large number of computers for people to use. Wi-Fi has also been provided.

Gallery space will provide a home for exhibitions, theatrical performances and author talks.

There are also four meeting rooms for hire by the local community and a refreshment area where people can sit and relax.

Lantern roof

Harrogate Library facade. Copyright: North Yorkshire County Council
The restoration project at Harrogate library has taken two years

One of the key elements of the two-year-long project has been the removal of the existing roof and its replacement by the 'lantern' roof originally envisaged by the philanthropist Andrew Carnegie.

The Scottish-American millionaire donated £7500 for a library to be built in Harrogate over a hundred years ago.

Cllr Mike Gardner, Leader of Harrogate Borough Council said: "This is a very impressive library and a wonderful facility for the whole Harrogate community to use.

"You can tell that the services provided have been designed in true partnership with residents and the building has been transformed into a light, airy and inviting library that I'm sure Andrew Carnegie would be proud of."


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