Journal and Gazette gained exclusive access to new community hub

Refurbishing work is continuing on the new �4m parternship centre
Refurbishing work is continuing on the new �4m parternship centre

It’s the new £4 million centre in the heart of the town which will revolutionise the way local services operate in Linlithgow.

The Linlithgow Partnership Centre, opposite The Cross, is fast approaching completion and should be finished by the spring before opening shortly after.

The one stop shop will host a number of local services under the same roof and give a new lease of life to one of the town’s most prominent buildings.

Among the facilities to be relocated in the new premises will be Linlithgow Library, St Michael’s Day Care Centre for the elderly, Police Scotland, Annet House, Local History Library and the Family House Society.

The Journal and Gazette was given an exclusive tour of the new look building this week. It’s clear from the outset of entering the centre that a tremendous amount of work has gone into the project but there is still work to be done before its new residents can move in.

The presence of asbestos in the structure meant that building work was delayed whilst a major programme of safe removal was undertaken taking around four months.

It has been completed as have structural floor strengthening works, while the window refurbishing project is progressing well and internal works are continuing.

Executive councillor for culture and leisure, Dave King, said: “The development of a Partnership Centre in Linlithgow has been a key aim for West Lothian Council for a long time.

“The council has a strong track record of creating centres that deliver positive benefits for the communities in which they are based. Our partnership model has already proved extremely successful in Bathgate, Fauldhouse and Broxburn.

“This multi-million pound investment will transform County Buildings and provide local people with first class community facilities in the heart of the town centre. The investment will safeguard the future of this important building for generations to come.”

The rooms appeared bright and spacious with plenty of natural light breaking into the building.

The first floor will house a new library, St Michael’s Day Care and Police Scotland. The lift to the second floor was in the process of being built where Annet House and the local history library are set to be located.

Council leader John McGinty said: “The building was previously used to deliver some council services, with limited public access to the property. The works will allow the internal space to be used more efficiently, and to open up large parts of the building to the public.

“The refurbishment and improvement works will ensure the building is multi-functional, modern and fit for purpose.

“By investing nearly £4 million in the new Linlithgow Partnership Centre, we are maximising the building’s use, delivering value for money and improving services for customers. This significant project by West Lothian Council builds upon a larger programme of investment in Linlithgow, such as improved sports facilities within the town.

“The opportunity to reinvigorate the building whilst delivering a modern service in Linlithgow will enhance the town centre and act as a one stop shop and community hub for local residents and groups.”