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Beloved Kensal Rise pop-up library reduced to rubble

PUBLISHED: 12:46 31 January 2014 | UPDATED: 15:08 31 January 2014

Kensal Rise pop up library was destroyed by guard this morning (pic credit: Jodi Gramigni)

Kensal Rise pop up library was destroyed by guard this morning (pic credit: Jodi Gramigni)

Archant

Library campaigners are riled by loss of the beloved Kensal Rise pop-up library which was “ruthlessly” destroyed by security guards in the earlier hours of the morning.

Guards, who currently occupy the closed library in Bathurst Road, obliterated the makeshift library built on the private land and on the edge of the pavement, at around 5pm this morning.

The books were tossed onto the damp streets without any protection from the rain.

Metal fences have been erected around the library which was listed as an Asset of Community Value last year.

Telling the Times she was “absolutely horrified” by the news, Jodi Gramigni a community volunteer added: “This is a complete and utter disgrace.

“They are essentially fly-tipping on the public pavement.”

Andrew Gillick, the director of Platinum Revolver Limited which took over the building from owners All Soul’s College in Oxford, has come under fire following these revelations.

Mrs Gramigni continued: “Brent council should stand up for the asset of community value.

“They have powers at their disposal to challenge this type of corporate vandalism.”

Furious campaigners have vowed to demonstrate against the destruction of their beloved pop-up library and are planning a protest outside the building later this afternoon.

Cllr Roxanne Mashari, Lead Member for Environment and Neighbourhoods and James Denselow, Lead Member for Customers and Citizens, visited the site to inspect the damage earlier today

Cllr Mashari said she was “shocked” to learn of the demolition.

She added: “As far as I’m aware we were negotiating with Andrew Gillick to get the community library in the main building.

“This is not conducive to finding an agreement with the local community.

“We need to find a solution and a safe home for the books which have been dumped on the street.”

The pop up library was erected nearly two years ago following the closure of the main library building, by the council, in a bid to save £1 million in October 2011.

Council chefs previously rejected Mr Gillick’s controversial proposals to convert the library into six flats, a cottage and a community hub, following extensive campaigning by Friends of Kensal Rise Library late last year.

The Times is currently awaiting a comment from Mr Gillick.


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