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New chapter at old library

Posted onPosted on 16th Jan
New chapter at old library

Eye-catching artwork and a new community café have heralded the start of a new era for The Old Library in Mansfield.
The Old Library Youth Arts and Media Venue unveiled its new look to cement its position as one of the county’s top creative, community and music hubs.

A new partnership will see Rumbles charity manage the community café five days a week ­— providing opportunities for trainees with learning disabilities to deliver work-based learning.

The historic building was once The Carnegie Library, which opened in 1905 before becoming a community arts and performance centre in the 1970s. It has been home to Nottinghamshire County Council’s County Youth Arts team since 2007.

Visitors can see the new artwork and digital media work that is bringing the Old Library to life. The work was devised with artist-in-residence Bec Smith (Urban Projections) and Pete Barber, together with young people who use the building.

Coun Liz Plant, vice-chairman of the Children and Young People’s Committee at the council, said: “Young people with a real association to the centre have played a crucial role with the art installation and new-look surroundings.

“The team is a success story for the creative industries. It has excellent sector links to professionals nationally and provides top-class support and guidance to musicians, dancers, singers and others interested in getting into these careers.

“There are also great facilities with a theatre, recording studio, dance spaces and a media suite.”
Gina Dolan, manager of Rumbles catering project, said: “I remember visiting this building when it was still a library. We hope the café venture will appeal to young and old alike. It is a fantastic setting.”

Pictured are embers of PLUG Promotions in front of one of the new pieces of artwork that they helped design. PLUG Promotions is a group of young people based at The Old Library, promoting and working alongside undiscovered young artists to create a platform for showcasing their talent, as well as giving others the chance to listen to their music and watch them perform. From left Ryan Calvert-Cousins, Georgia Woolley, Bailey Revill, Georgina James and Dan Jackson.