COUNCIL bosses have approved plans to dispose of Hale Library to the Hale Community Trust for £500k to try to re-develop the site.

It was discussed at the resumed executive meeting last Tuesday afternoon after the original meeting from June 22 was cancelled due to technical problems.

Cllr James Wright, the council’s housing and regeneration cabinet member, said the plans had been in the pipeline for more than five years.And even though the partnership had changed from Hillcrest Homes to Westshield Ltd, the same principles applied.

He told an executive meeting that while the site was being sold for considerable less than the market value, it was an important vehicle for securing the redevelopment of the Hale Library site and creating affordable housing.

“As an executive we accept that financial value is not the only value which should be in play here,” added Cllr Wright.

“Not withstanding the financial savings that the council will benefit from, in terms of ongoing maintenance and running costs but there will be a new library facility for Hale and an improvement in the library and community facilities for that area.”

He said the development would also help the council to meet its housing targets and provided extra council tax revenues. The authority also approved the temporary re-location of Hale Library during the construction of the new library facility at the Pavilion to the former RBS Bank and the disposal of the site with a 125 year lease at nil rent to the trust.