Citizens Advice Wandsworth is moving and improving

Published: 8 January 2016

Wandsworth’s Citizens Advice Service is moving to a new purpose-built centre within Battersea Library this month and introducing longer opening times.

The changes means free advice will be more accessible to Wandsworth people. The new centre will be easy to find in a well-known local place, and will be larger and more welcoming.

Battersea Library is be reconfigured to accommodate the new service with the children’s library section moving to a better and brighter space which has better access for parents with buggies. Offering both services within one building is expected to increase overall footfall and take up rates for both.

Citizens Advice Wandsworth is partly funded by the council and the new arrangement is expected to strengthen joint working between the two public services.

Advice and self-help information will be available via a drop-in service or by appointment. The extra space means the volunteer training programme and telephone advice services can be expanded.

The existing centre in York Road will close on January 12, and the new Citizens Advice Wandsworth service in Battersea Library, Lavender Hill will open on January 25, with expanding opening times.

Citizens Advice at 166 Roehampton Lane will remain open as usual, and will also have longer opening times. The service on Mondays and Thursdays at Tooting Library will also remain open.

Full details of service arrangements while the move takes place and new service times from January 25 are on the Citizens Advice Wandsworth web site.

Citizens Advice Wandsworth (CAW) Chief Executive Phil Jew stated:

“For some time now we have sought a move after concluding that our current premises in Battersea hold the organisation back from being the service it wants to be and that local people need. The exciting move to the library heralds a new chapter in the service’s 76 year history. It makes absolute sense to be co-located with the local library service. We hope to help more people and more quickly when we’re there.”

“Thousands of people contact us every year. Some are in crisis; destitute, homeless, in debt and others need help finding a way forward with benefits, housing, money, consumer or employment and many other problems. We are determined to ensure that local people have timely access to relevant advice.

The council’s finance spokesman Cllr Guy Senior said:

““The council has for many years funded Advice Services delivered by Citizens Advice Wandsworth to ensure free, independent advice is available to our residents. We have worked with Citizens Advice Wandsworth and our library contractors GLL to create this new centre because we are committed to ensuring that everyone that needs to use this vital local service can do so as quickly and easily as possible. “

Cllr Jonathan Cook, the council’s culture spokesman, said:

“These changes, along with the fact that Battersea Library is located in the heart of Clapham Junction, will make accessing advice easier and mean a much-improved children’s library that will benefit borough families.”

ENDS

Notes to Editors

The move has been part funded by the National Lottery through the Big Lottery Fund’s Advice Services Transition Fund programme and by the London Legal Support Trust.

Citizens Advice Wandsworth services are paid for by grants and contracts from Wandsworth Council and other organisations and charities but its advice is completely independent, confidential and impartial.

Battersea Library is managed on behalf of Wandsworth council by charitable social enterprise Greenwich Leisure Ltd.