£184k loan to parish council agreed to help save Moulton library

The library service will continue at Moulton Community Centre
The library service will continue at Moulton Community Centre

Plans to save Moulton’s library have been agreed after Daventry District Council agreed to loan the village’s parish council £184,000.

Northamptonshire County Council has reviewed its library service to see what it needs to legally provide and, where possible, transfer libraries over to community groups. Within the Daventry district, Daventry and Brixworth Libraries are to be retained as statutory provision but Moulton, Long Buckby and Woodford are not.

Moulton Parish Council had drawn up plans which would see it provide a community library in the current facility at Moulton Community Centre. This would take advantage of an offer from the county council to provide books, ICT and other support in return for an annual fee from the parish council.

Community, culture and leisure portfolio holder for Daventry District Council (DDC), Councillor Alan Hills, had previously said the deal was ‘short-term funding really rather like a bridging loan’.

The deal had been agreed by the district council’s strategy group in October but still required the approval of the full council. That approval was given on Thursday night (December 5).

It will see DDC provide the parish council with £184,000 to purchase the surrender of the lease, on the condition that the parish council then provides a community library for a ‘sensible minimum period’ suggested as 15 years.

The funds would come from the district council’s Strategic Infrastructure Fund. The council would get its money back from planning obligation funds from developers, of which £285,000 are due over the next few years. Once DDC has made its money back, any remaining planning obligation sums would be paid to the parish council to ‘maintain, improve and operate’ the library.

A report states that the agreement ‘causes only minimal impact’ on the district council’s financial position.