AMBITIOUS plans have been unveiled which could lead to longer opening hours and an Internet caf for a North Yorkshire library.

The county council wants to carry out a £500,000 revamp to the library at Pickering, and work could start later this year.

The authority is looking at the possibility of merging the tourist information centre and the library to provide a shared facility for county and district services.

"If we can find some way of providing extra services, we want to do that," said head of libraries, archives and arts Julie Blaisdale.

"We have been looking at the possibility of upgrading and increasing our floor space, giving free Internet access much more of a presence in the building, so people can nip in and out to check e-mails and so on.

"We have already started doing some consultations on the streets."

Pickering library was built in 1984, but the population of the area is regarded as having outpaced it.

"We think it is just too small. We just feel it could be bigger and better," she Ms Blaisdale.