New community library in church at Combe Hay
A village has set up its own people power mini-library.
Most churchgoers are familiar with the Good Book.
But now Combe Hay Church has hundreds of good books as it hosts a new community library.
Combe Hay Community Library was set up by local residents amid concern that the mobile library serving the village might be curtailed as part of B&NES Council cost-cutting measures.
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Local residents rifled through their shelves and bookcases and donated hundreds of volumes to the new community venture, which opened earlier this month.
Books on offer include both adult and children’s fiction, with additional literature supplied by the B&NES library services.
Clerk to the parish council, Peter Duppa-Miller, said the library was already proving popular.
“We called for book donations in the middle of January and they started to come through in bags and bags,” he said.
“There’s no computerised or stamping system for borrowing books, people just put their names, their house names and the name of the book down in a file and also the date it has been taken out.
“So far over one sixth of the households in Combe Hay have already taken out books and we will see how that develops over time.”
There were only two restrictions covering donated books - they had to be in good condition, and if non-fiction and dealing with legal or medical matters, no older than three years old.
Mr Duppa-Miller said the new facility meant that villagers could borrow books as often as they wanted without having to wait for the mobile library.
Previously many villagers were borrowing as many as ten books at a time in case they missed the mobile library when it visited.
The library is open seven days a week and is part of a move towards more community facilities.
A bookcase and special box for children’s book was provided by B&NES library services, which also advised on its layout.
A similar initiative will see Larkhall’s New Oriel Hall used as a library from May.