THE re-location of Redditch Library to the town hall is the preferred choice of Council Leader Matt Dormer.
The library building is earmarked for demolition under plans put forward by the Towns Fund Board to create a new public square where it is currently situated.
However the borough’s opposition Labour group have voiced fears over the future of the service should the demolition go ahead.
Councillor Andy Fry (Lab, Lodge Park) said: “Throughout my time as both a Redditch and County Councillor, I have supported our library service including the injection of funds to improve it.
“My concern is the demolition of the Redditch town centre library will leave a void in provision of this essential service.
“I am also concerned about the future provision of the Job Centre currently housed in the library.
“Until I am provided with the details of the future library provision, I am opposed to the current demolition plans.
“It is essential that any plans for its future and the towns fund as a whole, is subject to full, transparent reporting and public consultation.”
Coun Dormer, who also holds the communities and libraries portfolio at Worcestershire County Council, said Labour’s fears were groundless and that the plans were to demolish a building, not a library.
“I’ve had the opportunity to visit other libraries around the county and for instance the ones in Bromsgrove at Parkside and at Alvechurch are in much more suitable buildings,” he said.
“My preferred choice for Redditch library is the town hall.
“People have to realise that the building it is in at the moment is constricting the growth of our town centre.
“I would also urge people to get themselves a library card which will give them access to e-books and all manner of newspapers and magazines without leaving their homes.”
He added that moving the Job Centre to the town hall would also benefit jobseekers.
All works undertaken by the Towns Fund Board, which includes public realm improvements and the creation of a digital manufacturing and innovation centre should be completed by 2026.