Bygone chapters from West Swindon Library’s history will be celebrated at a special event this Saturday.
The library first opened its doors on the ground floor of Link Centre on Tuesday 25 June 1985, the second largest in Wiltshire with a 25,000-strong book collection. It also opened with a £500,000 high tech computer system – the first in the county – which would later be linked to 21 other libraries.
Borrowers could also take out cassettes and a children’s book den was allowed young people to sing and act as well as read.
To celebrate this landmark anniversary there will be a series of competitions, special exhibitions and activities on 27 June. These include a fancy dress story time at 11am with a craft activity immediately afterwards, an exhibition of photographs from the Local Studies team showing the construction of the Link Centre and library as well as a flag competition for children and a quiz for adults.
There will be tea and coffee available at 12noon and representatives from various groups that use the library will be on hand to showcase what they have to offer.
Adults will also be able to take advantage of a card-making session, while Swindon Festival of Literature Director Matt Holland will host the cutting of a birthday cake and speeches at 2.30pm.
Cllr Garry Perkins, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member responsible for libraries, said: “West Swindon Library was a flagship facility when it opened and was much needed in order to serve the ever expanding population in the west of the town.
“The library has been incredibly popular and the birthday celebrations will be a great way for anyone who has an affiliation with the library to come together and share their memories of the last 30 years.”
Pictured top, from the Swindon Link archives, Linda Black, the first librarian at Link Centre, accepting back copies of the Link magazine from 1989 to 1985 into the West Swindon collection. Below, images of the construction of Link Centre taken by Link magazine