Protest planned to keep Shellharbour Village library open

Councillor Kellie Marsh and Mark Jones oppose the library shutdown. Picture: CHRISTOPHER CHAN

Councillor Kellie Marsh and Mark Jones oppose the library shutdown. Picture: CHRISTOPHER CHAN

Residents of Shellharbour Village angered at plans to close their library are urged to pencil July 4 into their diaries.

Shellharbour City councillor Kellie Marsh has organised for a protest rally to be held on the lawn at the front of the library in Wentworth Street.

Under Shellharbour council's adopted Libraries and Museums Strategy 2024, the Shellharbour Village Library will be relocated to The Waterfront, Shell Cove, by 2018 and co-located with other facilities and visitors centre.

Cr Marsh said many people in the Shellharbour Village community were outraged that the community would be losing its library service.

She expected to get a good mixture of families and retirees at the rally set down for 4pm.

"The library is only a small library, but people here have been waiting and hoping for an extension for a long time," Cr Marsh said.

"For many elderly people going down to the library is a social event ... it gets them out of the house.

"The council has put the cart before the horse on this issue.

"They have proposed to open a library at the marina, but there is no funding or business plan in place to do that."

Shellharbour City Council said the decision to move the library, had been endorsed by previous councils.

The home library service would be expanded to provide for the Shellharbour Village's ageing residents' needs.

The strategy states that at 65 sqm the library is only 34 per cent of the minimum recommended size of 190 sqm for any branch library and about 12 per cent of the 580 sqm recommended for the projected population of the catchment in 2018.

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