Peckham Library reopens following climate friendly renovation

19 July 2023

Peckham Library has reopened following a £1.5 million refurbishment to upgrade the building’s facilities and improve its energy efficiency. 

The programme of works included green upgrades to retrofit the building with low-carbon, energy-efficient technologies including heat pumps. These improvements will help to save energy costs for the council whilst also reducing carbon emissions to help towards the council’s ambition to become carbon neutral by 2030.

The latest Climate Emergency report, published in July, showed emissions from buildings accounted for 77 per cent of Southwark’s total emissions, and new carbon-saving technologies at Peckham will help will tackle these emission.

The upgrade includes the following improvements:

  • the implementation of a new low-carbon heating, cooling, and ventilation system
  • new LED lighting that will improve lighting levels and save money
  • the replacement and upgrading of security and access control systems
  • refurbishment of all toilets, kitchens, staffroom, and security office
  • roof and window repairs
  • repairs, redecoration, and new flooring

Councillor Catherine Rose, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, Leisure and Parks, said: “We are very proud of our libraries in Southwark. Peckham is one of our biggest and busiest libraries and a critical element of the public realm and square. It not only offers traditional library services, but provides enriching events for children and adults, free Wi-Fi and rooms for hire. It lends itself into the life and times of Peckham.

“We are also aware that we need to address our buildings’ impact on the environment, and as a council, we have been working hard to set an example and reduce our emissions – including in our library buildings.

“The transformed space now stands as a shining example of green building retro-fit practices, within the complexity of its original architecture. It now has high-efficiency boiler controls, an upgraded ventilation system, repairs to windows and insulation, and LED lighting.

“We invite the community back in, ahead of the summer holidays, to experience our revamped library, where knowledge and sustainability coexist harmoniously, and to join us in Peckham’s next chapter towards a greener future.”

Over the next few years, Southwark Council has a work programme for retrofit upgrades across offices, libraries, leisure centres and youth centres, targeting the highest emitters with a fabric first approach of upgrades. This approach centres on improving the building first, such as walls, windows, roofs and doors, before moving the heat source away from gas.

Retrofit projects are currently underway at several locations including Burgess Park Sports Centre which is being upgraded with a heat pump and a green roof.

Double glazing schemes have also been completed at sites, to remove older, inefficient windows. These works total £2.5m and show the council’s ambition to deliver an efficient building stock that provides key services to our residents.

Page last updated: 19 July 2023

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