Yesterday myself and Mr B took a trip into Manchester to take a look around the newly refurbished Manchester Central Library.
The last time I went to this library was about 5 years ago when I was sent to do some research for a firm of architects I was working for, who were putting in a bid for a library re-design themselves. I was amazed at the grandeur and beauty of the place and it was with trepidation that I walked in today to see what they had done to such an already beautiful building.
I needn’t have been worried, the re-design is sensitive whilst also bringing the 21st Century firmly into the space. The lower part of the library is where the main changes have been made and where all the technology and modern design is on show but the architects and designers have been careful to sit modernity next to original features which works amazingly well.
I love the Pollen stools and Hush Chairs sourced from Naughtone Furniture
I really liked the quiet corners they have introduced and the bare unadorned features of the building with the highly modern furniture, brings an almost monastic feel to some of these areas.
Up the stairs on the third floor the building remains untouched but restored to its former glory, like an old lady wearing a new coat. The marble columns and original copper lights are enhanced by the natural daylight streaming through the glass domed ceiling. Glass fronted cabinets in the hallway, showcase parts of the old library, like exhibits in a museum, old library tickets, door handles and linen bound books.
With all the technology we have on hand now it’s important that libraries evolve into a sociable space that we can all use. A place to work, listen to music, find information on what’s happening in our cities and towns, have a coffee whilst reading the paper or a magazine, but it’s also amazing that we have the wealth of books available to us for research or interest purposes. The future of our libraries is so important and Manchester Central Library looks as though it has a great future.