Muswell Hill library to stay in its historic home – for now

Demonstration to save Muswell Hill library. Photo: Nigel Sutton

Demonstration to save Muswell Hill library. Photo: Nigel Sutton - Credit: Nigel Sutton

Plans to move the Muswell Hill Library from its beloved and historic home to the site of a former pub have been put on hold

This follows a consultation that revealed overwhelming support for the community library to stay put.

Of the 1,282 people who responded, 71 per cent said they wanted the library to remain in its Grade II-listed building.

Just 29 per cent supported moving it to the former site of the Green Man, under a new block of flats.

In response, Haringey Council said on Tuesday it will revisit all its options, and make a decision in spring 2017. The option to use both sites has been put forward.

The Friends of Muswell Hill Library, a campaign group that has been fighting the move from the outset, tentatively welcomed the decision – but said the fight wasn’t over yet.

Its chairman, George Danker, said the move should “now be completely off the table”.

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He said: “The results of the consultation show an unambiguous public opposition to this proposal.

“Additionally, the council’s suggestion that they need more time to explore the full range of options puts their intentions in question.

“If there are indeed options other than the two which were offered to the public why were these omitted from the consultation in the first place?”

Protesters said the new building was “a dark, oppressive space with low ceilings” and limited access.

However, the council said the new building on Muswell Hill would offer 25pc more space, improved accessibility and better facilities.

Cllr Bernice Vanier said: “We want modern, fully accessible libraries with the best technology and facilities.

“Yet it is very clear from the consultation that there are very strong feelings about the current building.”