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Is Cardiff Council reneging on library promise?

Questions are being raised over the council’s pledge to save Cardiff’s libraries, as Roath library remains shut.

Originally shut for a broken boiler and then because of the threat by Cardiff Council to cut funding for seven of Cardiff’s libraries, Roath library is now shut because of damage to its roof causing a leak.

Scaffolding around Roath library

Scaffolding around Roath library

All in all it means the library is heading into its fourth month of closure, and no alternative method of delivering the services the library offers has been found. Cardiff Council is said to have been looking into the option of using St German’s church as an alternative while maintenance is carried out, but is understood to be baulking at the £100,000 cost of refurbishing the church to make it suitable.

To make matters worse for the residents of Adamsdown, the smaller library at the STAR community centre in neighbouring Splott will also soon be unavailable to use as the centre is due to be demolished. Its replacement will not be ready for a good few months and will be in Tremorfa, making it further away for the Adamsdown residents to reach.

Notice outside the library

Notice outside the library

Councillor Manzoor Ahmed, who is a Labour councillor for Adamsdown, said: “I have been a councillor for two years and there was no maintenance work done for 14 years before that. That’s 16 years without maintenance being carried out on Roath library. It’s really in a bad state.

“In an area as deprived as Adamsdown they should be adding to the services, not taking them away.”

A spokesperson for Cardiff Council said: “The closure of Roath library is not a permanent one” but declined to comment further when the library would be open and how the Council is going to offer the library’s services to the Adamsdown community.

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