Mary Carleton Reynolds, Minister Ring, Minister Moran and Cllr Paul Ross
Mr Michael Ring TD, Minister for Rural and Community Development, was in Longford on Thursday, June 20, to officially turn the sod on the new community library in Edgeworthstown, Co Longford.
“I am delighted to be here today to officially turn the sod on the new community library in Edgeworthstown." He said.
Continuing he said, "This is a great day for Longford and a great day for Edgeworthstown."
The Department of Rural and Community Development has approved funding of €2.4 million under its Library Capital Programme towards the overall €3.9 million cost of this project. The Libraries Capital Programme is approximately €29 million and supports a total of 19 projects.
Minister Ring stated, “Edgeworthstown is a long time looking for a new library.
“We did allocate previously over €1.4m, but we had to come back again to give a second round (of funding). So my department is providing €2.4m out of €3.9m.
“The county council are matching the rest.” he confirmed.
Minister Ring commended the local development association for their fundraising efforts and praised them for having the initiative to purchase the site in the first place and subsequently donate it to the Longford county council, praise that was reiterated by Cathaoirleach Micheál Carrigy.
Minister Ring said, “I commend Edgeworthstown the Development Association for their initiative and fundraising effort to secure this property for the library.”
The Minister also acknowledged the role of Longford County Council staff and commended the collaboration between the Local Authority and the community that has brought Edgeworthstown Community Library to this stage. Minister Ring then commended Longford county council CEO Paddy Mahon for his work on the project and the continuous work of the county’s library staff.
“Paddy well done, you have done a great job.” he said.
Before officially turning the sod, Minister Ring issued a warning to the Irish public to start using services such as the library, or risk losing them in the future.
He stated, “I am making the call to the people of this county and this country, If they want their services they must use them.
“We have seen in the past where services haven’t been used and are lost and then there are big public outcries.” he said reiterating his call.
Minister Ring also used the opportunity to launch the Summer Stars Reading Adventure 2019.
The National Summer Stars Reading Adventure 2019 is part of the national “Right-to-Read” programme to support literacy and reading development across local authorities and is led locally by the public library service. The programme is in its fourth year of implementation and the focus of the campaign is on services to support children and families.
Launching the Summer Stars Reading Adventure for 2019, the Minister said: “This wonderful initiative will run in public libraries across the country this summer and, of course, it is free and open to all children.
“I encourage everyone to bring their children to the local library and participate in this programme." he concluded.