SUDBURY’S award-winning Tourist Information Centre (TIC) is on the move tomorrow when its three staff relocate to a new town centre location, writes Anne Wise.
The centre, formerly in Gaol Lane, will now be based on the ground floor of the library on Market Hill as part of a plan by Sudbury Town Council for the former corn exchange building to become a “community hub”.
Meanwhile, plans for the library to become part of a county-wide pilot scheme – under which it will be managed by an independent body – have been delayed for three months due to legal issues.
Sudbury is now expected to join the pilot in June.
Alison Wheeler, Suffolk’s head of library services, said the delay was down to legal issues in transferring library staff to the new independent body.
The body – called an Industrial and Provident Society (IPS) – is set to save £2.7million, or 30 per cent, from the county’s libraries budget. Sudbury Town Council has already agreed to take on the responsibility of running the library.
Town council clerk Sue Brotherwood said: “In recent years, the town council has taken over the day-to-day running of the Delphi Centre and the TIC, saving both from potential closure. Taking on the library will ensure it remains in its present location.
“It is great news for Sudbury that we have been able to protect these invaluable services, however, we do need to be as financially and practically prudent as possible with our assets and this move makes perfect sense.
“We will continue to look at what other services may also be moved into the library with the aim of providing a wide range of services to benefit the entire community under one roof.”
Sudbury’s tourist centre has won a number of awards in recent years for high levels of customer satisfaction.
It has been based in the office at the rear of the town hall for several years and, before that, was sited in a caravan outside Roys supermarket in Eastern Road. It has been singled out for praise by both VisitBritain and East of England Tourism.
It will be open seven days a week, with a limited hours service on a Sunday. Library services will not be disrupted during the tourist information centre move.
Councillors have yet to decide what to use the vacated space for in the future.