Lenzie firm to build library in Strathblane after community raises £985,000

A ‘pioneering’ new partnership has been unveiled between Stirling Council and the community of Strathblane for the £1 million build of a new library in the village.

Fleming Buildings of Lenzie will begin work on the build in January, with it scheduled to open in October 2022.

The facility, which was designed by Thomas Robinson Architects, will be carbon-neutral thanks to its renewable energy system. The ‘complex’ installation comprises roof-mounted solar panels and an air-source heat pump, together with battery and thermal storage facilities, all of which managed by a ‘sophisticated’ control programme donated by local firm, CC North of Killearn.

Described as a ‘remarkable’ project by Stirling Council, the 211 square metre building has been funded entirely through personal and charitable donations – with a total of 270 local people donated to a library crowdfunding appeal that raised £985,000.

The local authority will lease the facility to Thomas Graham Library Ltd, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Strathblane Community Development Trust.

The library is to be named after Professor Thomas Graham, the great-uncle of Angus Graham, a local landowner and businessman who is principle donor.

Professor Graham was a Glasgow-born chemist who pioneered the science of diffusion and became a leading British scientist in the mid-19th century.

Councillor Chris Kane, convener of Stirling Council’s community planning and regeneration committee, said, “A visit to a library should enrich the mind and the soul but to do that we must invest in the contents, the staff and the buildings.

“Local Government finances are getting tighter all the time and it is incumbent upon the council and communities to work together to find innovative solutions to ensure our libraries have a bright and secure future.  This project is an excellent example of what is possible, and I am excited to see the results of this unique and positive collaboration when it opens its doors in 2022.”