THE library in Thornbury is to be relocated despite opposition to the move after councillors voted unanimously in favour of the proposal.

The facility’s fate was decided following lively debate at a South Gloucestershire Council cabinet meeting on Monday.

The proposal put forward by Conservatives on the council to move the library from its current location on St Mary Street to Turnberrie’s Community Centre is now set to go ahead.

Speaking of the decision, cabinet member for communities and tourism Cllr Heather Goddard said: “As part of our continued investment in Thornbury we want to give the town a new library.

“The current library is looking very aged and as Thornbury grows it is only right that it has a bigger, better library that represents the aspirations for the town, benefitting from our new policy of extended library opening hours.

“Previous councils have tried and failed to upgrade Thornbury’s library, but we are going to make it happen.”

The proposals to relocate the library have divided opinion since they were first announced, with some feeling that moving it away from its central location in the town could see less people use the facilities.

Cllr David Chubb said that he believed the current high usage of the library was linked to its current location, which allows families to visit the shops and library at the same time.

“When the shops close, the library goes dead. I fear that this is what will happen at Turnberrie’s,” he said.

Town councillor Clare Fardell said: “The vast majority of people do not want the library to move.

“It is exceptionally well used and very dear to people’s hearts.”

“Also, Turnberries is some distance away from the centre, and it is most unpleasant getting from there to the car park in the dark.”

South Gloucestershire Council leader Cllr Matthew Riddle said that street lighting around the Turnberrie’s site would be improved as part of the new library package.

He added: “The increased footfall at Turnberrie’s will offer some hope that the community café, currently moth-balled, can be reopened.”

Plans for the library’s relocation were unveiled following a consultation, which saw the public reject the move by a majority of more than two to one.

Resident Charles Eardley-Wilmott condemned the outcome of the vote, describing it as a ‘done deal’.