Library @ the Lightbox officially handed over to Barnsley Council

Building will now be fitted out ahead of Saturday 13 July opening

The state-of-the-art Library @ the Lightbox – the first new building of the redevelopment of Barnsley town centre – has been officially handed over to Barnsley Council.

Henry Boot Construction – the contractor for The Glass Works –handed over the keys on Wednesday (8 May) marking the end of the construction of the building which began in 2017.

The internal fit out of the flagship building is now taking place ahead of its official opening on Saturday, 13 July.

Set over four floors, the Lightbox will provide a range of traditional and digital services as well as features that make it much more than a library.

Highlights include cutting-edge virtual reality, interactive story times, a raft of tablet and desktop computers, an events space and rooftop terrace.

Fully accessible, it will include a sanctuary room for people with autism and play host to a Music and Memories group supported by the Alzheimer’s Society, designed for people living with dementia and their carers.

Visitors will also have access to a range of health and wellbeing services including adult social care, support for parents and counselling, as well as drop-in sessions with midwives and health visitors.

The Falco Lounge – adjacent to the library - will provide a new food and drink destination in the heart of the town centre.

Ryan O’Loughlin, Project Director at Henry Boot, said: “We are delighted to be part of the Library @ the Lightbox delivery team, working collaboratively with BMBC, NPS Barnsley & IBI Architecture to deliver the project to the very highest standards.

“60 per cent of our project staff are from Barnsley, and we have used local contractors wherever possible - the Library @ the Lightbox construction has always had a community feel about it.

“We hope the people of Barnsley are as proud of it as we are”.

Cllr Jenny Platts, Cabinet Spokesperson for Communities, said; “A big thank you to Henry Boot Construction, NPS Barnsley, IBI Architecture and everyone involved in the development of the Library @ the Lightbox.

“I want to give special thanks to residents for their cooperation and patience while we’ve carried out this work.

“We are confident that this stunning facility will benefit and meet the needs of Barnsley people and visitors now and in the future.”

Karen Temple, Managing Director at NPS Barnsley, said: “We are proud to have employed local people on this prestigious flagship project.

“Our talented team of apprentices from various trades and technical disciplines have also been involved, helping to inspire and further their construction careers and build pride in their community.

“Being part of the Library @ the Lightbox project team has been a fantastic experience. NPS Barnsley has ambitious growth plans, and we hope to continue working towards regenerating and improving our town centre for all to enjoy.”

Seamus Lennon, IBI Group Studio Principal and Project Lead, said: “We are delighted to have led the Design Team for the Library @ the Lightbox.

“It has been a pleasure working with a great client team and contractor to deliver a truly innovative building to such high standards for the people of Barnsley.

“We are excited to see it contribute to the town’s transformation in the months and years to come.”

Take a journey through the new library here.

This news is linked to Town Spirit, our new way of working better together. We believe, that if everyone in Barnsley does just one thing, we can make our borough a more welcoming place to live, work, invest and visit.

We’re committed to #BuildIt by making Barnsley better; creating a vibrant, family-friendly town centre, full of opportunity and potential. #OwnIt by visiting Barnsley town centre regularly, spending your money locally and positively promoting your town.

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