Old Library creates new opportunities

Officioal opening of Cornholme and Portsmouth Old Library community hub.
Officioal opening of Cornholme and Portsmouth Old Library community hub.

A new community hub for residents in Cornholme and Portsmouth was officially launched during an open day on Sunday.

The Old Library, on Parkside Road, Cornholme, has been renovated and brought back into use as a meeting place for the local community and a base from which groups can run activities.

Sunday’s launch event was the culmination of a major scheme by the Cornholme Community Project (CCP) to provide much-needed facilities in the area.

Trustee Jean Tempest said: “We had a fantastic day. There was a real buzz about it.

“There has been a lot of curiosity about it from the local community and we wanted everybody to have the opportunity to come and see what we had done.”

The scheme has received support from the Community Foundation for Calderdale (CFFC), who purchased the building and leased it back to CCP; the Big Lottery Fund, who provided a grant to contribute towards the cost of the refurbishment work and to hire two part-time staff; and Todmorden Town Council.

There were several special guests at the opening, including the new Mayor of Todmorden Coun Jayne Booth and CFFC chief executive officer Steve Duncan.

All those who attended were asked for their feedback about the new facilities, which include a community cafe, digital learning station and a job club.

Jean said a variety of groups have also expressed interest in using the Old Library for a variety of functions such as a holiday club, lunch club and a book exchange.

“There’s not a lot of space up here, apart from the two churches,” she said.

“I’m sure that the Old Library building will get a lot of footfall.

“People are very keen to volunteer their time and energy to make it a success.

Coun Booth said: “Cornholme Community Project is really forward thinking.

“They have got some great people on board who give their commitment, time and effort for free to develop a much-needed community asset.

“It’s a lovely space and shows what a wonderful place Todmorden is.”