Tuesday 25 September 2018

All under one roof: new home for Co. Wicklow's Archives, Family History Centre & Local Studies Library

Here's some good news from County Wicklow. A new home has been found on the main street through Wicklow Town that will allow the County's Archive service, Family History Centre, Local Studies library department and main public library to come together under one roof.

The future destination is a modern and spacious building, vacated three years ago by Ulster Bank, on the Upper Mall (see Google Street View below). It was purchased by Wicklow County Council last year and will be renovated and redeveloped to accommodate the specific needs of the new services. The total cost of the project (including acquisition) is estimated to be €3million.

The 1,234m2 granite-clad building has six storeys, two of them below the main street level. The lowest floor will house the new Local Studies area. Above it will be the climate-controlled County Archives, from which is operated the Wicklow Family History Centre, complete with a dedicated Readers' area.

Going up, the next two levels will be home to a children's libary room with more than 4,500 books, and an adult library with more than 10,000 books. Floor 4 will house 25 IT stations, while the top floor, which will feature a mainly glass wall providing great views over the quays, the harbour and the Irish Sea, will be an exhibition space.

Extensive redevelopment works are due to start shortly and it's hoped the new building will be welcoming researchers and the public by the end of 2019.