Mobile library conversion
Mobile library conversion to outreach activities for Cambridgeshire County Council by Scott Walker
“Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.” Helen Keller
We were recently tasked with an exciting mobile library conversion challenge by Cambridgeshire County Council. Our task was to transform an existing vehicle (….and with no disrespect intended, a rather tired one!) with the objective of creating a vibrant and inviting travelling community space able to offer a range of activities by the Think Communities Team.
The Think Communities partnership was developed in collaboration with partners to create a shared vision, approach and priorities for building Community Resilience across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough and more so in areas less well served by other amenities.
For us to design and create an internal concept for this mobile library conversion we needed to understand the Think Communities Vision:
- People: Resilient communities across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough where people can feel safe, healthy, connected and able to help themselves and each other.
- Places: New and established communities that are integrated, possess a sense of place, and which support the resilience of their residents.
- System: A system wide approach in which partners listen, engage and align with communities and with each other, to deliver public service and support community-led activity.
You can read more about this great initiative at https://www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/council/communities-localism/community-resilience
Setting the challenge for a small internal space
So for us the challenge was to create a proposal that could provide all that was wanted within the confined space of the vehicle and which needed to include:
- Areas for displaying posters, leaflets and other information.
- Space for up to 6 people, or 5 people and 1 wheelchair user, to sit and work on laptops.
- Storage to safely secure up to 10 laptops and other workshop equipment.
- Hot water making facilities and a small fridge.
- The ability to hold a range of activities inside ranging from counselling to group meetings, educational training to informative presentations
We also had to take into consideration and propose safety solutions associated with the restrictions imposed by Covid.
The requirement for the external space in the conversion
We needed to enhance the outside appearance for the mobile library to establish its’ new outreach roll in the community.
The solution for the conversion
Our solution was to create an interior with fixtures and fitting that could be very adaptable to changes uses that the vehicle was likely to be put to so to achieve this we included items such as:
- Folding lightweight lap top desks which could easily be stored in a cupboard
- Comfortable folding chairs which, like the desks, could be stored away in a cupboard when not required.
- Freestanding comfortable “reception” chairs and matching coffee table for positioning in varied locations.
By carefully selecting the furniture to be installed we were able to create the adaptable interior that could accommodate varied uses such as:
- Individual lap top use.
- Boardroom style meetings
- Informal group conversations
- Educational classroom style formats
- Exhibition and information displays
We needed to undertake the following work on the exterior:
- Respray paint the whole of the external bodywork.
- Add a wind out awning over the entrance.
- Install a build in large LED screen.
By undertaking this work on the exterior we improved the general appearance of the former mobile library and visually transformed it into an eye catching community outreach vehicle.
For more information about our mobile library conversion, plus our product range and services please visit our web site at https://www.multivehicletechnology.co.uk/ or call Steve Stones on 011 6326 0989 or e-mail him on at firstname.lastname@example.org
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“To make a difference in someone’s world, you don’t have to be amazing, rich, talented, beautiful or perfect. You just have to be you and care.” Rebecca Fox