Everton Library - A Creation Centre for Liverpool and new home for Hope Street Ltd...
Things have been pretty quiet for the last year. We apologise for not keeping you informed of developments during 2015.
The project came to a standstill at the beginning of the year for the simple reason that the finances didn't stack up. The building, once opened, would have been too expensive to run and would have cost Hope Street Ltd. to occupy the building. The project was not financially feasible or sustainable.
The whole reason for us to support this project was to ensure the building, once opened, could pay for itself AND generate income to deliver activities to be delivered for the people of Everton. We could not consider being involved in such a project that would drain our financial resources.
Thanks to work commissioned by Liverpool City Council, we are now confident of a more promising future for the project.
We are pleased to announce that Hope Street Ltd. will lead the development for the restoration of the building. We are in the process of submitting a revised Stage 1 application to the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).
A significant amount of work has already been achieved, thanks to funding from the HLF. This expenditure will not be wasted. The designs by Austin-Smith:Lord will be utilised. The quantity surveying services provided by Appleyard & Trew are still valid. Structural engineering services provided by Morton Partnership are also valid, as are the mechanical and engineering services provided by Max Fordham.
Planning permission has been granted by Liverpool City Council and listed building consent has been provided by English Heritage.
An Activity Plan has been written following consultation with local residents, schools, community groups and artists. A business plan is currently being updated. We need to make sure that this time the figures stack up...
All of these achievements have taken three years to accomplish. Slow progress? Yes, but we are still on target to open the building within the timescale that projects of this nature require. We were informed, two years into the project, that projects of this type usually take 10 years to realise - from identifying a building until it is opened... If only we'd been told this when we began work on the project!
In order to achieve the above, we are grateful to the Jewel on the Hill Trust, and to the HLF in providing support in 2012, including £284,400 development funding to help progress the aforementioned detailed plans in support of the application for a full grant.
The vision remains the same. A beautiful building in a historic location developed as a creation centre serving Everton and beyond - a cultural hub for creative activity, enterprise and a resource for creative and heritage education.
Everton Library is situated on St. Domingo Road, at one of the highest points in the city, and is a local landmark with views over the city centre, North Liverpool, the river, the sea and Wales. This project is an important part of the wider regeneration activity that will take place in Everton Park and the surrounding neighbourhoods over the coming years, aiming to create a vibrant new district by redesigning the park as a visitor attraction and by providing quality new housing development.
The development of Everton Library is one of Liverpool Echo's 'Stop the Rot' campaign. A feature will appear in January 2016 providing new information about this project.
For further information, images and interviews, please contact:
Hope Street Ltd.
Office: 0151 708 8007
Mobile 0759 532 7651