Residents web-wise up with Merton

Over £300k invested in more than 100 computers for libraries

Merton will invest £326,000 over the next year to make sure all residents have access to computers and the Internet. The People’s Network will offer free access to 112 computers in the borough’s seven libraries and Heritage Centre.

The main beneficiaries of the People’s Network will be children, older people, unemployed people and those who do not have full access to computers at home or work.

The council will receive £261,000 towards the project from the New Opportunity Fund via the Community Access to Lifelong Learning programme.

The computers will be installed from January 2002, in three phases:
· Phase 1 – Morden, Wimbledon and Pollards Hill (Jan-Mar 2002).
· Phase 2 – Mitcham and West Barnes (Apr-Jun 2002).
· Phase 3 – Donald Hope, Raynes Park and Heritage Centre (Jul-Sep 2002).

Karl Carter, Cabinet Member for Lifelong Learning and Secondary Education, said: “Computers and the internet will be available to the whole community. Just as books have always offered a chance for people to better themselves, online education is a route to better prospects in today’s world. Books are available from public libraries and the benefits of the new technology will be offered there too.

“This project will greatly enhance our communities opportunities for lifelong learning and skills development.”