A successful new chapter for
Granard Community Library

Rosemarie Gaynor and Helen Martin at Granard library. Photo: Shelley Corcoran
Granard Community Library has undergone many changes over the years, but none more so than those of the last 12 months.

Granard Community Library has undergone many changes over the years, but none more so than those of the last 12 months.

The library which nestles in the Market House lies at the heart of the north Longford town and has seen generations of families visit the welcoming facility for books, information and lots more over the years.

The Market House has been refurbished over the last 12 months and as a result the community library in Granard has been revolutionised.

Mullinalaghta native Rosemary Gaynor has been the librarian there for the last 27 years and she has seen the library undergo many changes during that time. But its overhaul has not only transformed the library, it has had a positive impact on the entire community.

“Granard Community Library belongs to the whole community,” said Rosemary.

“We have this wonderful, bright, spacious and state of the art library here on the ground floor and then upstairs we have a space for exhibitions.

“At the moment there is a permanent exhibition on the history of Granard and 20 of its famous people, and we have also had book and CD launches there as well.

“It is a very exciting time for the community library here in Granard.”

And while it may have taken the best part of a decade to finally come on stream - for the 150 or so onlookers, including Rosemary Gaynor and County Librarian Mary Carlton-Reynolds, who were all there on that day last May when the newly refurbished Market House and Community Library was finally officially re-opened by Minister Phil Hogan - it was also a very special day for Longford Libraries.

“It is a very exciting time for the community library here in Granard.”

A total of €500,000 in State aid had been set aside for the project and the resulting landmark in the heart of Granard is a testament to all who fought for its refurbishment over the years.

When the Leader called last week, the library was a-buzz with lots of young readers in evidence and plenty of people using the IT facilities.

The library boasts wi fi and broadband facilities; ebooks with the necessary tools to download; self issue machine; all types of books for all ages and access to historical records.

There is also a study area for exam students and book club members meet on the last Wednesday of every month. The Granard Writers Group also use the library facilities and visitors to Granard from all over the world stop of at Granard Community Library seeking information about the most famous couple in Irish history - Kitty Kiernan and Michael Collins!

“We have a permanent exhibition upstairs on the most famous people from Granard and we have people from all over the world coming in here seeking information,” added a smiling Rosemary.

“We also provide assistance to the public and research and we have access to 100,000 library stock across the country on the National Network, so if we don’t have an item here in Granard we can source it within three to five days.”

“Just to walk into this building in the mornings now is wonderful”

The is great weight placed on the literary heritage of Granard, County Librarian Mary Carlton-Reynolds points out: “We place a huge emphasis on local writers here at Granard Library; Granard is steeped in literary history and that is something that we are all very proud of”.

Granard Community Library is also affiliated to the Irish Newspaper Archive and local poet Noel Monahan was commissioned to write a poem for the historic opening back in May, the wording of which now adorns the walls of the beautiful bright, spacious and welcoming library building in Granard.

Rosemary says it is a wonderful place for her and assistant Helen Martin to work.

“Just to walk into this building in the mornings now is wonderful,” added Rosemary.

“This building is so beautiful and historic and it is wonderful to see all the great work that has been done here. It is work that will continue.

“I want to take the opportunity to thank everyone for all their support over the years; the loyal customers of the library and the people who have stood by me.

“Thank you all so very much; everyone is welcome to Granard Community Library.”

Longford Libraries Summer Buzz - ‘Going Place with Books’ is currently underway. The children’s event which began in July will continue through the summer months and every time a child reads a book from the library, they will get a special bee stamp. Once 10 bee stamps are collected, readers will be entered into a draw for a special prize.

All participants will be awarded a Summer Reading Buzz Certificate.

To find out more about

Granard Library email granardlibrary@longfordcoco.ie; check out Granard Library on Facebook or call (043) 6686164.