A PRESSURE group is hoping that a last minute intervention will stop a planning application being discussed tomorrow.

Save Welshpool Library, has contacted Assembly Members, Kirsty Williams, Joyce Watson and Eluned Morgan asking for them to intervene.

This is so that whole issue of Powys County Council (PCC) office changes in Welshpool can be discussed at an open meeting.

According to the group this should happen before a planning application, to change the use of Welshpool Library into office space is decided by PCC’s planning committee on Thursday, October 24.

Planning officers have recommended approving the application.

Brian Timmis, of Save Welshpool Library, said:  “There is a strong movement in Welshpool against the co-location of the library and museum:

“A petition which garnered over 4,000 signatures, a well attended march and public meetings.  Welshpool Town Council refused to pass the proposed change of use.

“The proposed co-location would involve a 66 per-cent reduction in size and have a significant negative impact on  services.”

Mr Timmis added that he believed discussion at the planning committee meeting will have to be kept to the library and believes this: “Prevents us from presenting our case effectively”.

The library move follows the decision by PCC’s cabinet in December 2018 to close its main office in Welshpool the Grade II listed Neuadd Maldwyn.

Neuad Maldwyn will become an “Extra Care Facility” and is set to be transferred to the registered social landlord (RSL) ClwydAlyn for them to convert it.

In the planning application report, principal planning officer, Gemma Bufton, said: “It is noted that the library is to be re-located to the Powysland Museum building.

“It is therefore considered that appropriate alternative provision is to be made available within this community.

“The building is proposed to be office space to PCC staff which will include a residents’ access point for Housing, Social Services and other services, this is in replacement to an existing facility which is due to close (Neuadd Maldwyn).

“The building is still to be utilised by visiting members of the public providing a contact location for PCC staff in the Welshpool area and therefore allowing the council to provide a facility and service in this location.”

Ms Bufton added: “A majority raised concern over the new location of the library provision at the museum.

“This is not for consideration as part of this application, but it is noted that alternative provision is being provided within the community and therefore this development would not result in the loss of facility.”