A COMMUNITY LIBRARY born from the closure of several public libraries in Moray two years ago, but later forced to close itself, has provided a funding bonus to local good causes.
The Hopeman Community Library was created in April 2014 just months after the library in the town was closed by Moray Council, born from a need to retain a service in the community – alas, it was to be short lived as no permanent home could be found for the new library.
However, a large number of books had been donated and there remained cash assets that the community library felt should remain in the area for use by local causes.
The children’s books held by the library were donated to Hopeman Primary School and Lossiemouth High School, while remaining books and shelving units were sold at a book sale and coffee morning in July last year, followed by two smaller sales during the Hopeman Gala Week.
Funds raised from these and the remaining financial assets of the community library provided £1637 to be distributed to good causes in the Hopeman community, with the library committee deciding to disburse these as follows:
£208.00 to the Memorial Hall Committee; £361.00 to Hopeman Primary School Library (for new cushion seating, bookends and new books); £250 shared between the Scouts, Cubs and Beavers; £250 between the Guides, Brownies and Rainbows; £250 to the Senior Citizens; £150 to the Hopeman B.A.L.L. group; £100 to Hopeman Christmas Lights and £70 to The Oaks.
When the new books were delivered to Hopeman Primary School Library this week pupil reporter Annabella Middlecote wrote: “My name’s Annabella and I’m in primary 4.
“I’m part of the Library Committee at Hopeman Primary School and we surveyed the other pupils to see what books they would like added to the library with the funds from the Community Library. Of the 50 new books there are ‘Rainbow Magic’ books, ‘Dork Diaries’, ‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid’ books, ‘Minecraft Handbooks’, ‘Seaquest’, ‘Tom Gates’ books, Scottish mythology, some books on keeping pets and wildlife books.
“The other pupils obviously like the new books because they are flying off the shelves and most of them have already been borrowed. My favourite is the ‘Dork Diaries’ – because I like reading journals and sometimes write my own.”
The community library’s driving force was Vivien Hendry, who said: “Hopeman Community Library would like to thank once again those who supported us, especially the campaign group ‘Save our Libraries Moray’, Publishing Scotland, WH Smith, Dufftown Book Group, authors Lari Don and Howie Firth and storyteller Michael Williams. The library was also given valuable storage space by Moray Housing Partnership in Lossiemouth.
“Although the council had granted some funding for specific spending on book covers and similar needs, in the end this was not received and so was not used.
“Funds were also allocated by Hopeman Community Association to cover use of the hall, and the funding was returned to the community.”