A library is the glue that holds a community together, Edgemead library principal librarian Renatha Snyders said at last week’s official opening of a R1.8 million extension to the 40-year-old building.
The four-month project was completed on Tuesday August 10, and mayor Dan Plato and and ward councillor Helen Carstens attended the ribbon-cutting on Wednesday August 25
Mr Plato said the library was part of Ms Carstens’s legacy because her persistence showed she wanted the best for her community.
“Councillor Helen really pushed her boundaries to get something done on this piece of land,” he said.
Ms Carstens said she was proud to have been part of the project. Library stock had increased over the years with the help of fund-raising by the Friends of the Library, and, with growth in patron membership and various programmes and workshops, the library had become too congested. The expanded the library would now benefit the community for many years to come, she said.
“I must admit that there is something special about opening a book and feeling the texture and the smell of those pages. That is something that the instant gratification of Google cannot provide,” she said.
Ms Snyders said everyone was indebted to Ms Carstens for her help.
Lorraine Matthewsen, who has worked at the library for 13 years, said she hoped the library extension would encourage more people to visit the library.
“It is amazing to see children from the community walk in here with their parents and grandparents who encourage them to use the facility as an educational hub,” she said.
Friends of the Library treasurer Lynne Anderson said reading was therapeutic, and the library extension offered the public a quiet sanctuary away from the pressures of daily life.
Edgemead Primary School principal Gregory Stokell said the library was a useful learning resource for many of his pupils.