Darlington Library

Children's Library

23rd April

The Junior library for me, is the most special place in the whole of our library. I have spent many years within those four walls working with children and families and have enjoyed every single second.

My memories are of smiling faces during storytimes and rhymetimes. We have had visits from magicians, storytellers and authors. Birds of Prey have flown under the high ceilings and meerkats have scampered over the floor whilst we have listened to their handlers talk about their habitats and what they like to eat. Watching the focal point of the animated castle being deconstructed and removed was emotional as we looked towards our next chapter.

With my somewhat idealised view of the children’s library I admit that I barely noticed the flaws of the patchy paintwork and the cracks in the plasterwork, but as I looked upon these with Site Manager Alan I admitted that this space really did require some attention.

The mouldings that once framed art enclose the original heating panels and Alan explained that in the 1930’s when they were first installed, it appears that the heating was switched on a little too early, which has caused cracks. Over the years these have been painted over, but as part of our refurbishment we are restoring the plasterwork to a high standard throughout the building.

Kirk, who is working on the plasterwork, explained that he was using goat hair in the render to replace horse hair which was used to provide a natural reinforcement within the render originally. By recreating some of the methods and techniques used in the original build, we hope to sustain and conserve our heritage.

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