ATHERTON’S former library is to be sold at auction this month, with a guide price of £100,000.

Atherton library, which covers more than 11,000 sq ft, was first opened in 1905 when it was heralded as a super-modern, state-of-the-art public building, lit by electricity and featuring a combined central heating and ventilation system.

The library was designed by Bolton’s oldest architectural practice, Bradshaw Gass & Hope, which went on to create Manchester’s Royal Exchange and UMIST.

The red-brick building has been vacant since 2018 when the library service was relocated to Atherton the town hall.

It will be up for auction on January 20 at Pugh Auctions.

Pugh describes the Elizabeth Street property as requiring complete refurbishment and being “in a dilapidated condition, having been vacant for a number of years and suffered from water ingress”.

Paul Thompson, Pugh’s managing director said: “The library is a landmark building in Atherton and part of the town’s history. Its size and handsome design mean there are all sorts of possibilities for a positive new future for it.

“It’s also in a great location, close to Atherton station and town centre and, of course close, well located for Bolton and Manchester.”

Pugh’s next auction, featuring Atherton library as well as land and properties across the UK, will be held online on January 20.

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Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic last March, Pugh has sold lots totalling over £35m at its auctions, which have been held on the firm’s online platform.