According to the internet, Huyton Library opened in 1997, however it felt brand new to me. Perhaps it has recently been refurbished although I doubt it as Knowsley had to reduce its libraries opening hours in order to meet budget cuts.
The building is modern although the doorway didn’t look too inviting (as I approached I couldn’t see any signs of life and I thought it might be closed!). Once through the automatic door I could see an art gallery ahead and the library to the right.
The library was a pleasant surprise. The colour scheme of orange and blue really worked. There isn’t an enormous amount of book stock (Knowsley’s population is only about 150,000) but I liked the smaller touches. The knitting corner was lovely, the homemade chalk outline rug in front of the crime section was funny.
The children’s area on a separate mezzanine floor was very spacious, colourful and inviting (I noted the Elmer book boxes – that elephant gets around).
There was a rolling video of locals’ memories from the war in the middle of the library. I found the noise a bit strange but it did prevent the uncomfortable quiet that some libraries can have and there was a quiet study area upstairs.
Also upstairs were computers, reference and a family history section, plus a display about Huyton’s Internment Camp.
The grand piano on the ground floor was a surprise. This is the first time I’ve seen a grand piano in a library but it looked right at home there!
All in all this library is one of my favourites so far.