THERE was cause for celebration this week as the doors to Hereford Library were thrown open for the first time in more than a year.

The building was closed after asbestos was found on the site during maintenance work in September 2015, but modifications have taken place to modernise the library for its users.

There is a suite of new PCs available to use for free and the ceiling has been raised with new lighting. WISH (Wellbeing Information and Signposting for Herefordshire) will also operate from the main library as a shared facility to make the most of the building.

The Hereford Museum and Art Gallery has also launched an exhibition celebrating the life and work of Herefordshire artist Brian Hatton, with additional opening hours during the first two weeks. The exhibition will run until March 25.

Councillor Harry Bramer, cabinet member for contracts and assets, said: “This is a great step in improving the customer experience at Hereford Library, with a modern look based on users’ feedback.

Herefordshire Council is very grateful to those who have worked tirelessly behind the scenes to get Broad Street ready for opening, and to the frontline library and museum staff who have remained positive during the period of closure.

“The council has shown it is committed to the library service, with this additional investment in Hereford and previous investment in the award-winning Masters House that houses Ledbury library.”

Further work on the development of the Broad Street building will follow, with updates on the Herefordshire libraries Facebook page.