One Stockport Hub Consultation

Closed 19 Oct 2020

Opened 8 Sep 2020

Feedback updated 3 Jun 2021

We asked

We asked your thoughts on establishing a new cultural and social hub in Stockport town centre, provisionally titled 'One Stockport Hub'. This would mean a relocation from Central Library to One Stockport Hub.

You said

The consultation was undertaken over a six-week period and ended on 19th October 2020 and received 1005 responses.

Of those who responded, 45% stated that they will or probably will visit One Stockport Hub. Of these, 40% did not currently use any library services. 29% of respondents stated they probably will not visit, or that One Stockport Hub is not for them.

Further engagement was carried out with Stockport Youth Engagement group,  who expressed enthusiasm about the potential for a new community hub and the fact it would be based in a more accessible location close to shops and buses.

There was clear support from individuals and groups for services that it would be more accessible to disabled residents, and an interest in contributing to the design of services in the Hub to support this. 

We did

One Stockport Hub will open its doors in Stockport Town Centre, initially offering a pre-bookable service from 17th March. It will be located in Mersey Square, a highly accessible location in the heart of the Town Centre.

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.

Subject to the current government restrictions being eased on 12th 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. We will also be operating under strict Covid secure guidelines to ensure the safety of both visitors and staff.

Overview

Over the last few years, we have seen changes in Stockport Town Centre. More people are visiting the town and finding more things to do when they’re here. The challenge posed by the recent pandemic means it’s even more important to continue the improvements and make a visit to Stockport Town Centre a safe and enjoyable experience. As part of this we want to introduce ‘One Stockport Hub’ which we would aim to have open early in 2021. 

The centre of Stockport is undergoing a £1billion programme of investment. One Stockport Hub will make its rich heritage accessible to those visiting with local history displays. Just as with Stockport town centre itself, it will also also look to the future. One Stockport Hub is envisaged to be an important precursor to the council's ambition for a much larger town centre cultural and community hub for which the council has applied for government funding of £14m.  

Our vision for One Stockport Hub is that it will provide a library service as well as a cultural and social experience in the heart of Stockport town centre for Stockport residents and beyond. Situated on Mersey Square, One Stockport Hub would be a new ‘front door’ to Stockport town centre, providing an easily accessible point for Stockport residents to experience local history, browse and borrow books, seek digital support and access information and advice.  

Across the UK, library usage is in decline with the need to reimagine libraries in a way that is relevant to a broad cross section of our community. Library services currently located at Central Library on the A6 would be provided from One Stockport Hub in Mersey Square, with the added benefits of being closer to a range of public transport and convenient for those vising Stockport town centre for other purposes such as shopping and entertainment. 

One Stockport Hub would be designed using modern design principles, be fully accessible, with flexible space and larger windows to attract more people in and make them aware of what’s on offer. It will house a digital zone with computers and tablets for use free of charge, as well as free Wi-Fi and space where visitors can use their own devices.  

One Stockport Hub will sit at the heart of Stockport town centre, making use of an empty retail unit that was previously the former Argos store. In the current retail market, it is unlikely that this unit will be let in the near future. The unit has a prominent position on Mersey Square and is visible from the A6. One Stockport Hub will provide a modern welcoming view for those coming to Stockport town centre and widen access to library services, digital support and local history as well as providing a vibrant use in what could otherwise be a vacant unit.   

It is also proposed that the heritage library offer - which needs to be offered on a more limited pre-bookable basis for the foreseeable future, as advised by National Archives due to covid-19 – would be temporarily provided at this site.  

The Hub would bring together a range of services in one easily accessible location, including:  

  • local history displays from our museum collection 

  • a Stockport shop selling items currently offered in our museums’ shops 

  • a dedicated family library with adult and children’s literature to borrow and browse 

  • digital facilities with data and charging points as well as dedicated computers, tablets and access to printing services 

  • access to our usual Heritage material and Stockport Archives  

  • access to information and advice services 

The Hub will be designed as a covid-secure venue with the ability to adapt if and when measures can be removed. It is envisaged that the One Stockport Hub will provide an open plan cultural and social space. Opportunities for local groups to meet (once government guidance allows) will be created by working with nearby food and drink offers and other venues such as Hatworks.   

In a typical year, Merseyway is visited by around 150,000 people each week. It is Stockport’s main retail area and a place for people to work, play and connect. The Hub will help to transform Merseyway, bringing a more family-orientated space, which will help to support our High Street and create a vibrant Centre that people want to visit and spend time in. It will also relocate library services closer to the following transport links: 

  • Buses from across the borough stop right outside in Mersey Square 

  • Sat just off the Trans Pennine Trail, secure bike parking will be available outside the hub.  

  • More than 800 car parking spaces are available in the Merseyway car park    

Click here to view the indicative draft drawings for One Stockport Hub (opens in a new window)

You can have your say on the proposals and help us to understand what is important to you from the Hub. This will help us to shape our plans. We welcome your feedback.

Answers to frequently asked questions can be seen below:
Frequently Asked Questions
 

This consultation closes on Monday 19th October 2020. If you require the consultation in another format, please email: consultation@stockport.gov.uk