CASTLEFORD Library is undergoing a £1m transformation as builders move in to turn it into a community hub.
Construction work at the Carlton Street building – to be known as Castleford Forum – has begun, including demolition of a current extension to make way for an expansion of the library costing £1.4m.
The building’s museum space will double to display more of the town’s heritage.
Coun David Dagger, Wakefield Council’s cabinet member for culture, said: “This is the next stage in a new and improved library and museum for Castleford residents.
“The work is a key milestone in the renovation of the Forum and I am pleased we are on track to open the improved facility next spring.
“We have been working closely with community groups, local members and the town centre partnership as part of a steering group to make this refurbishment happen and it is great to see it moving forward.”
Development work marks the end of a 13-year campaign by members of Friends of Castleford Library (FOCAL) and the Castleford Heritage Trust for a combined library, museum and arts service in the town, which was blighted by funding problems including three failed National Lottery bids.
Dave Wilders, chairman of FOCAL, said: “One of our primary aims was to work for a new library and museum – it’s had its ups and downs to say the least, but it’s fantastic to know we have contributed to bringing new, modern facilities to Castleford.”
The library has been operating from a temporary location at Bridge Arts in Sagar Street since last month and users can continue to borrow books and use services there until the library reopens.