One Stockport Hub sets up home in Merseyway

A new cultural hub will soon open its doors in Stockport Town Centre, initially offering a pre-bookable service only from 17 March.

One Stockport Hub will be located in Mersey Square in a unit formerly occupied by Argos and will provide a temporary solution for a covid safe location for library services that would normally be offered at Central Library.

Visitors will have access to:

• a dedicated family library with adult and children’s literature
• a digital zone with computers and tables for use free of charge, as well as free Wi-Fi and space where visitors can use their own devices
• Council’s heritage material and Stockport archives
• a Stockport shop selling items currently offered in our museums’ shops
• local history displays from our museum collection

Sitting in a highly accessible location in the heart of the town centre, which will appeal to both shoppers and visitors, the hub will initially offer a limited service. In line with current government guidance, visitors will need to pre-order books for collection and will also have to book a slot to use a computer for essential use, such as job applications and benefit claims.

Subject to the current government restrictions being eased on 12 April, this will be the earliest date that book browsing and drop-in use of computers will be reintroduced, as well as access to the shop.

To ensure the safety of both visitors and staff, the Hub will be operating under strict covid secure guidelines. Numbers will be limited, and you may have to queue before entering the premises. Visitors will be asked to sanitise their hands on entry and observe the one-way system that is in operation.

Councillor Kate Butler, Cabinet Member for Citizen Focus and Engagement at Stockport Council, said: “I am thrilled that local people will soon be able to visit this fantastic asset to Stockport. Although we can only offer a limited service at present, I am excited about the prospect of offering a full service again, as and when the restrictions are eased, and for more people to take advantage of what’s on offer.

“To help us to ensure these services are there for those who most need them, I ask that if people are able to delay their visit to a time when these additional restrictions are lifted.

“The Hub will provide much needed digital access in the heart of the Town Centre for those who do not have devices or internet connectivity at home, as well as being a family friendly space that people will want to spend time in. I can’t wait for local people to see how we’ve brought a disused shop unit back to life to create this exciting new facility.”

The Hub is the first stage in the council’s ambition for a much larger town centre cultural and community centre, which has already seen the council awarded £14m from the Government’s Future High Street Fund to help realise this game changing vision for the town.

To order a book or to pre-book a computer, visit the Council website.