Cricklewood Library saved by campaigners

campaigners save Cricklewood Library

The refurbishment of Cricklewood library in Olive Road will go ahead after campaigners reached their fundraising target.

Friends of Cricklewood Library had until 11.59pm on Monday (25 September) to raise their £113,000 target, or lose a £40,000 pledge from Mayor of London Sadiq Khan, but they reached their goal thanks to the generosity of the local community.

Sally Long, of FoCL, said: “It’s all been absolutely terrifying but it just shows how much people care around here. Someone put in the last £3,000 which made it go over.

“A lot of people were determined we were going to make it.”

The library was one of 25 projects chosen to receive funding by Sadiq Khan through his Crowdfund London scheme. Failure to raise the funds would have meant a loss of all the pledges. The branch, built in 1929, was one of five libraries closed by Brent Council in 2011 to save £1million.

The group have fought for six years to retain the library which was demolished last year and rebuilt as a mixed development with a community space on the ground floor.

Campaigners have succeeded in securing a 999-year lease on the building which when fully refurbished will provide real focal point for the community not just lending books, but offering ESOL classes, homework clubs, activities for under fives, computer access, creative and craft groups. The group also hopes to host workshops, and a range of further activities and classes.

Ms Long added: “This library really is for the people by the people. We’ve done this on our own. Now we are going to build a truly inspirational space.”

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