Tableland Regional Council’s (TRC’s) Atherton Library is celebrating 70 years of sharing books, programs and other resources with the Tablelands community.
‘Before Atherton had a local government library, a ‘reading room’ was established at the Atherton School of Arts, which is now the Atherton CWA building,’ said Acting Mayor Kevin Cardew.
‘The room was open daily, and held the leading papers in the Commonwealth including the London Truth.
‘Literature lovers paid an annual subscription of £1 (or 5/- per quarter) and could exchange books on Wednesday at 4–6pm and 8–9pm.
‘The Council library was opened on 14 December 1950 in the front room of the current Atherton Council building.
‘The Cairns Post recorded the occasion and reported that ‘it was the first of its kind in Queensland with special sections for children and adults’.
‘In 1978 the current building on Robert Street was built and, over the years, the building has grown to include a gallery in 2008 and covered foyer in 2011.
‘Times have certainly changed, as have the role of our libraries.
‘These days membership is free and provides access to a wide range of resources and programs including e-books, audiobooks, online magazines, film streaming, online courses and more.
‘Gone are the days of just exchanging books — our libraries are important community hubs.
‘I encourage you to head to the Atherton Library to celebrate its 70th birthday and see the display of photos and old uniforms.
‘There’s even a big birthday card so you can wish the library a happy birthday,’ said Acting Mayor Cardew.