Residents in Elmswell have celebrated the recent refurbishment of the village’s library.
The community rallied behind the Friends of Elmswell Library and Suffolk Libraries groups to raise more than £15,000 to complete the revamp.
The library, which has been hailed ‘the pride of Elmswell’, has seen extensive work completed including a new space-saving moveable shelving, new furniture and improvements to the children and young people’s areas.
Students from West Suffolk College also lent a hand, decorating the inside of the library with a fresh lick of paint.
Emma Yarrow, Elmswell Library Manager, said: “Elmswell Library Friends, with the support of very generous fund-raisers and organisations, managed to achieve something really very special.
“The library has been transformed into a modern, smarter and more welcoming space - and with movable shelving it is much more flexible.
“When we held our first event and pushed away the shelves we couldn’t believe how much space there was.
“This has only been made possible by a lot of hard work by very dedicated and kind-hearted people who have given their time and effort for free or made really very substantial donations.
“The new design incorporates ‘dementia friendly’ aspects, with plain carpets so as not to confuse or distress those who are living with the condition, a grey entrance mat instead of a black one, so as not to cause confusion, and our signage is clear and easy to understand.
“Our staff have all also attended a Dementia Information Session so they are more understanding and patient with those with symptoms.
“We are turning our little library into a community hub somewhere everyone is welcome, information is easily accessible, customers feel supported and where we can inspire learning and literacy in a comfortable environment with more up-to-date resources.”
Jimmy Jewell, Chair of the Elmswell Library Friends (ELF), said: “ELF is delighted to have raised the money which made this work possible.
“Grateful thanks are extended to all those who kindly donated towards the appeal and to all those who have helped in making the various fund raising events such a success.
“Refurbishing the library was a massive team effort, and the response from customers has been incredible.
“We believe it is the pride of Elmswell.”