'The western and semi-circular end of the old
Guildhall, where the magistrate's benches formerly stood, is a
public lobby fitted with seats, with the librarian's desk and counters immediately
opposite. The public pass between the counters to the body of the room, which is
provided with tables and chairs for readers. The bookcases occupy the available
spaces on all sides, and between them and the public centre there are rails fitted to iron
standards, within which is a passage around the hall for the use of the librarian only.
Whilst, therefore, the readers are well provided for in the body of the hall, the
librarian has his own space for carrying out his duties without interference.
Immediately under the barrier are the hot water pipes for heating the room.
The two small galleries and pigeon holes which
ladies formerly occupied have been removed, the openings fitted with bookshelves, and the
spaces behind converted into store closets. The bookcases are of pitch pine, and the
tables of oak, and all the fittings have been specially designed for the building.
The adjoining newsroom is conveniently fitted
with tables and newspaper stands, and has a good pitch-pine dado around the walls.
The wall plastering throughout is tinted
green, which contrasts well with the colour of the woodwork. In the heads of the
windows are some interesting fragments of stained glass from the
built in James the First's reign.
The alterations have been well carried out by
Mr Stanlake, builder, from the drawings and instructions of Mr Hine,
the honorary architect.
Mr Stephenson fitted the hot water apparatus,
and Mr Whipple has done the gas fittings. It is certainly not saying too much, and,
indeed, it is not saying enough to remark that Mr Eveleigh's
was never seen to so much advantage as it is now. The exterior, however, is still