ABP donation secures sustainable future for Humberston Library

May 18, 2015

Port Manager Grimsby ; Immingham Mike Sellers serves a cup of tea in Humberston Library’s new tea shop, the kitchen of which has been paid for by ABP, while Your Community Hub’s Melissa Taylor accepts the company’s donation

A Grimsby library which has been saved from closure by a newly-formed community enterprise has received a welcome boost thanks to a generous donation from Associated British Ports (ABP)

The Humberston Library was closed by North East Lincolnshire Council as it was not economically viable to keep it open, meaning more than 800 book lovers from the area would no longer have a library facility close to their home.

However thanks to Your Community Hub, an enterprise run by Nathan and Melissa Taylor, Grimsby residents who didn’t want to see the library close, Humberston has been given a new lease of life. The library has now reopened and boasts a brand-new tea shop, which Nathan and Melissa hope will give it a long and sustainable future.

Nathan said: “We were already long-term users of the library and we were disappointed to hear of its potential closure at the end of 2013. We know how important the library is to the community but we also knew that it needed some work to make it fit-for-purpose, without being a burden on the taxpayer.

“We decided that opening a tea shop within the building would provide a means for the library to make money and ABP’s donation has paid for the kitchen, meaning we don’t have debts to service as we begin trading.”

ABP has donated £5,000 to Your Community Hub to help keep the library open by ensuring its café is equipped to the highest possible standard, and users are already enjoying their new-look facility.

“We are already over two-thirds of the way to building user numbers up to where they were, and we’ve had lots of positive comments from visitors, many of whom have said that this is just what the library needed.

“As well as the tea shop and library, we also offer baby yoga and Kinetic Kids classes and local clothing retailer The Style Lounge is also part of the venue. The library is available to hire and we’re also looking at services and activities aimed at the over 50s, which we hope to be able to offer in the very near future.

“We currently have 1000 users visiting the library each week and we hope the plans we have for the facility will increase this further.”

ABP Port Manager Grimsby & Immingham Mike Sellers said: “We were only too pleased to be able to help get Humberston Library up and running and secure its future for the benefit of the whole community.

“We wish Nathan, Melissa and the rest of the team the best of luck with the library and we look forward to seeing it succeed over the coming months and years.”

The library is run by Nathan, Melissa and a group of 16 volunteers who each give between three and 10 hours or more of their time each week to keep the facility open.