A LIBRARY and community hall has been opened in memory of the late Redbridge Council leader Keith Axon by his widow Helen.

The Keith Axon Centre in Grove Road, Chadwell Heath, was opened with a ribbon cutting ceremony on Wednesday, May 5.

Redbridge Mayor Cllr Vanessa Cole, Cllr Joyce Ryan cabinet member for leisure and libraries joined Mrs Axon at the centre, which will provide community facilities for nearby residents.

When the centre is not being used as a library it will easily convert into a community centre. When the bookshelves are folded away and the library 'disappears', visitors will be surrounded by a collection of Edwardian photographs.

The community hall will be open 30 hours a week as a library and will be available for hire for the remainder of the week.

Mrs Axon said: "It is a great honour for me to open this wonderful centre named after my late husband, Keith. He had a great passion for Redbridge and this is a wonderful tribute to him and his 29 years of hard work and commitment.

"I know he would be very proud that his name will live on with this building. I hope residents make good use of it, as I am sure they will benefit greatly from its excellent facilities. I hope they take the time to ask about the person it was named after."

Cllr Ryan said she was thrilled with the multi-purpose centre: "I am confident that it will be used extensively as both a library and community hall.

"Cllr Axon was a great supporter of the scheme and I feel he would be proud of this new facility. I am delighted that this wonderful dual use facility is named after Cllr Axon, and feel that it is a fitting tribute to mark the way in which he served the residents of Redbridge for 29 years." For more information about the centre call 8708 0790.