AM backs Briton Ferry Library plans | AC o blaid cynlluniau llyfrgell Llansawel

Regional AM Suzy Davies is backing a community group seeking funding to upgrade Briton Ferry Library.

This grade 2 listed building was opened in 1902 but now needs a new roof expected to cost about £80,000.

Welsh Conservative Mrs Davies went along to meet Briton Ferry Library chairman Colin Morgan, secretary Kevin Edwards and some of the volunteers who took over this building from Neath Port Talbot Council four years ago and who now run the library service there. Almost 30 local people man the rota which enables the library to open five days a week.

Suzy said: “I take my hat off to this ambitious group which has stepped up to the plate to maintain a service that means so much to the community. This building, with its clock tower, was the home of the town’s own urban district council and the council chamber is still there. Its use today is to provide library services and also meeting rooms for local organisations and various activities – but it clearly has potential for much more.

“I had a detailed discussion with them about where they can seek funding and I will be writing in support of any applications that they make in future. Apart from the historic importance of the building, it’s the contemporary and relevant use today that guarantees its future.

“Neath Port Talbot Council made a decision four or five years ago to hive off some of their libraries to their own communities because of a shortage of cash. These groups are eligible for funding that the council is not able to access so in one way it may help to save them.

“I am backing this group all the way. They need capital funding to carry out essential repairs but they also need revenue each year to cover the running costs and upkeep of what is a large and expensive building.

“I am sure that the community will keep the library doors open by thinking beyond what a traditional library provides and look forward to the 21st century.

“The spectre of losing this building still hovers in the background but I suspect that it has such a place in people’s hearts that they will actively support sensible ideas to enhance this much valued community asset.”

 

Mae’r AC Rhanbarthol Suzy Davies yn cefnogi ymdrechion grŵp cymunedol i gael arian er mwyn uwchraddio llyfrgell Llansawel.

Cafodd yr adeilad gradd 2 ei agor ym 1902, ond bellach, mae angen to newydd ar gost o tua £80,000.

Aeth Mrs Davies o’r Ceidwadwyr Cymreig, ati i gwrdd â Colin Morgan, cadeirydd Llyfrgell Llansawel, yr ysgrifennydd Kevin Edwards a rhai o’r gwirfoddolwyr a gymerodd yr awenau gan Gyngor Castell-nedd Port Talbot rhyw bedair blynedd yn ôl ac sydd bellach yn rheoli’r gwasanaeth llyfrgell yno. Diolch i ymdrechion 30 o bobl leol sy’n gweithio ar rota, mae’r llyfrgell ar agor bum diwrnod yr wythnos.

Meddai Suzy: “Dw i’n codi’n het i’r criw uchelgeisiol hwn sydd wedi ymroi i gynnal gwasanaeth sy’n golygu cymaint i’r gymuned. Yr adeilad hwn â’i dŵr cloc, oedd cartref cyngor dosbarth trefol y dref ac mae siambr y cyngor yno o hyd. Heddiw, mae’n cael ei ddefnyddio i ddarparu gwasanaethau llyfrgell ac ystafelloedd cyfarfod i sefydliadau lleol a gweithgareddau amrywiol – ond mae’r potensial yno i gynnig llawer mwy.

“Cefais drafodaeth fanwl gyda nhw ynglŷn â lle i chwilio am gyllid a byddaf yn ysgrifennu i gefnogi unrhyw gais y byddan nhw’n ei wneud yn y dyfodol. Heblaw am bwysigrwydd hanesyddol yr adeilad, y defnydd cyfoes a pherthnasol ohono heddiw sy’n sicrhau ei ddyfodol.

“Tua pedai-pum mlynedd, penderfynodd Castell-nedd Port Talbot werthu rhai o’u llyfrgelloedd i’w cymunedau eu hunain oherwydd diffyg arian. Mae’r grwpiau hyn yn gymwys am gyllid nad yw ar gael i’r cyngor, felly gallai helpu i’w hachub mewn rhyw ffordd.

“Dw i’n cefnogi’r grŵp i’r carn. Maen nhw angen arian cyfalaf i wneud gwaith trwsio hanfodol, yn ogystal â refeniw bob blwyddyn i dalu costau rhedeg adeilad sy’n fawr a digon drud.

“Dw i’n ffyddiog y bydd y gymuned yn cadw drysau’r llyfrgell ar agor trwy feddwl y tu hwnt i ddarpariaeth llyfrgell draddodiadol ac edrych ymlaen i’r unfed ganrif ar hugain.

“Mae’r ofn o golli’r adeilad yn dal i hofran yn y cefndir, ond dw i’n amau ei fod mor annwyl i bobl nes y byddan nhw’n cefnogi’r syniadau synhwyrol i wella adeilad sy’n gymaint o gaffaeliad i’r ardal gyfan.”