Aylesbury Vale libraries to be used as warm spaces again supporting people through winter

Free places people can visit to escape the cold
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Bucks Council has relaunched its warm spaces initiative to support people throughout the county.

Libraries across Buckinghamshire will be used as free community hubs that people can visit if they need somewhere to stay warm.

Last winter, the council opened up all of its libraries and community libraries as Welcoming Spaces. It is part of the local authority’s Helping Hand programme designed to assist people during the cost of living crisis.

The council has relaunched its welcoming space schemeThe council has relaunched its welcoming space scheme
The council has relaunched its welcoming space scheme

The idea behind Welcoming Spaces is to provide warm, free, safe, and supportive places that any resident can visit at any time of year. They allow people to keep warm, save money on heating and access free support, advice and Wi-Fi, as well as meet new people.

Councillor Clive Harriss said: “Libraries are the perfect place for people to come to if they are in need of some warmth and company. Cost of living pressures are still having an impact on residents and if you are worried about putting your heating on at home, please remember, you can come to one of our Welcoming Spaces. Not only can you relax in comfort, anyone seeking a bit of company can meet with others and our staff are on hand with information and advice on a range of topics. The initiative worked so well last year that we are keen to ensure that everyone knows they are once again open to all.”

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Other community groups in Bucks are running similar initiatives. Bucks Council has provided a list of the places offering warm spaces here and confirmed which libraries can be used here.

Community groups or organisations that want to offer a Welcoming Space can complete an online registration form that will lead to them being added to Bucks Council’s list.

The council is also working with local voluntary and community organisations to distribute free Warm Packs, including practical items such as a blanket and socks, to particularly vulnerable residents.

Councillor Arif Hussain added: “We are asking people to be a good neighbour and keep an eye on them, especially older people or those who live on their own.”