Thursday, 4 March 2010


At this morning's meeting of Sefton's Cabinet agreed to lease the ground floor of the Southport Visiter’s Tulketh Street offices while work is underway on the £15 million Southport Cultural Centre project. The town centre site is only 300 yards from the present Library.

The decision has been warmly welcomed by Southport MP John Pugh who campaigned strongly against the original decision last November of Labour and Conservative councillors not to provide any temporary library.

Local Liberal Democrats organised a 7000-strong petition and persuaded Southport resident Jean Alexander (former Coronation Street star ‘Hilda Ogden’) to speak to a Council meeting voicing support for a temporary library.

John Pugh praised the work of Southport Lib Dem councillors who had taken a lead in securing the the Visiter site. Having heard that space might be available they got the ball rolling in pushing officers to negotiate with Trinity Mirror, owners of the Visiter Group. "Before Christmas both Conservative and Labour councillors were saying that a temporary Southport town centre library could not be afforded," commented Dr Pugh. "My Lib Dem colleagues on the Council have done a great job in pushing for an affordable location. The Visiter newspaper offices will cost less than a third of the figures previously quoted." "At long last the Council has taken heed of the 7000 signatures on our petition. When we were out collecting signatures in the cold and wet of last winter it was clear just how important residents of all ages think the library is."

We should make it clear that there is plenty of room for the Library on the ground floor of the Tulketh Street building leaving ample space for the Visiter on the first floor.

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