The Old Library
The Old Library stands on the corner of Green Lane and Lister Drive, in the L13 area of north Liverpool.
Designed by architect Thomas Shelmerdine, the library was funded by wealthy philanthropist Andrew Carnegie who was so impressed with the ‘public spirit of Liverpool’ that he personally donated £13,000 towards its construction. Formally known as ‘The Andrew Carnegie Library’, this distinctive, historic building opened in June 1905 and served the public as a much-loved local library until its closure in 2006.
It stood empty and fell into disrepair until 2012, when Lister Steps began actively campaigning to save the building from further neglect. With so many fond memories of ‘The Old Library’, as it became known, we knew that the Grade II listed building was not only architecturally & historically significant but an important part of our community’s shared heritage. We saw an opportunity to bring the building back to life as a vibrant community space that could provide support, bring people together and be the spark to make our area better.
Lister Steps successfully gained Preferred Developer Status from Liverpool City Council in 2012 and we began the process of applying to the National Lottery Heritage Fund to help us restore and renovate the building.
The council funded £100,000 of holding works to support the structure and we worked hard over the next few years to progress our bid, appointing OMI Architects to re-design the building, raising match funding and consulting with stakeholders & the community. In November 2016, we were awarded £3.95 million from the National Lottery Heritage Fund and received the fantastic news that the project was approved to go ahead.
The ‘Andrew Carnegie Library’ opens to the public
The library closes over health & safety concerns