In 1892 the Free Libraries Act allowed councils to put a halfpenny on the rates to provide libraries. The Temperance Movement in Colwyn Bay decided that libraries were a good way of keeping young men out of public houses. Members of the Movement attended a council meeting in December 1901 and demanded a library for Colwyn Bay. Under the chairmanship of the Rev. Thomas Parry, a committee was set up to take the idea forward.
In 1902 a public meeting was held in the town to decide on an appropriate memorial to commemorate the Coronation of King Edward VII. It was decided to build a library.