Library moves into church in West Flanders
Even if you don’t have a library card, you might want to visit the new library in Wielsbeke, West Flanders, which is now housed below the arched ceiling of the town’s church
The good book
The library in Wielsbeke, West Flanders, has moved into a portion of the town’s church. Sint-Laurentius still holds mass as usual, during which the library is closed.
A new floor was added to the church, so now library patrons can browse under the arched ceiling. The second floor does not cover the entire area of the church, so anyone standing in front of the altar can still see the arched ceiling as well. And those using the library can peer over a low wall to see the altar.
So that neither service bothers the other, weddings, funerals or any other church-related service can only happen when the library is closed. As it is closed three days a week, including Sundays, this shouldn’t limit its function.
“There’s no question of a repurpose or of limiting the religious function,” Wielsbeke mayor Jan Stevens told VRT. “Instead, we have chosen to continue to use the church as a church here on the ground floor.”
Other library services, such as the archive, reading room and offices, are housed in a new section built onto the side of the church. “What makes this unique is that we are retaining the traditional use of the building while adding another service to it,” said Stevens. “And I think that these amenities are compatible with each other.”
Photo courtesy VRT