DUDLEY Council’s library service scooped first prize for innovation and development at the prestigious International EDGE Awards 2012 ceremony in Edinburgh.

And it was almost a double victory for the team as they narrowly missed beating a national website in the virtual category of the awards which reward good practice in innovative library and information projects.

The library team received the award for its innovative approach to the shared delivery of services at Brierley Hill Library, which combines a housing office and Citizen’s Advice Bureau.

The team was also voted runner-up in the virtual category for the online one-stop shop Dudley community information directory.

Praising Dudley’s entry - the judges said the shared service in Brierley Hill was an example of “what can be done to ensure the place of the local library at the heart of the community whilst still making the efficiencies that are demanded”.

Councillor Adrian Turner, Dudley’s cabinet member for housing, libraries and adult learning, said: “This is fabulous news and the accolade is well deserved which demonstrates the team’s ability to modernise the service and tailor it to the needs of local people.

“It is great to see different services coming together under one roof to bring real benefits to local people and well-deserved recognition for Dudley libraries further afield.”