Barnsley Libraries awarded Arts Council England funding to give our community libraries a 'digital boost'

We’re excited to announce that we’ve been awarded £50,000 from Art Council England’s Libraries Improvement Fund to help us improve digital infrastructure across our libraries.

Matched by £10,502 from Barnsley Council, our ‘Digital Boost’ project will help us make sure you can enjoy modern digital solutions in our libraries, no matter where you live.

We believe ‘Digital Boost’ will have a positive impact across all our libraries, including:

  • Increasing self-service options in our community libraries.
  • Improving digital provision, making it easier for you to access e-readers, laptops, charging units and digital screens when you need them.
  • Creating more maker-boxes, helping us to deliver more makerspace activities for young people across our borough.

Makerspaces help young people develop their skills and be creative by working together on science, technology, engineering, arts and maths (STEAM) activities.

We currently have a Maker Space Lab in the Library @ The Lightbox, equipped with the latest technology to help young people explore the exciting things they can build.

Our ‘Digital Boost’ project will be part of Barnsley Libraries refurbishment programme, improving digital connectivity as part of our Digital Barnsley ambitions.

This programme is bringing exciting improvements to the libraries in the heart of your communities. You can already enjoy updated facilities and an enhanced offer at Hoyland and Roundhouse Library, with more planned to reopen over the next few months.

Councillor Caroline Makinson, Cabinet Spokesperson for Public Health and Communities, said: “Our libraries are digital hubs in the heart of our local communities, bringing people together to learn, connect with our borough’s rich culture and explore what’s possible with technology.

“We’re excited by what our ‘Digital Boost’ project will mean for libraries across Barnsley, helping us be even more modern and innovative. Building on the exciting updates we’re bringing to our community libraries, the project will help you enjoy more of what you love about our libraries and help more young people unlock their creative potential.”

Our ‘Digital Boost’ is helping us deliver on our Barnsley Library Strategy 2022-2025 ambitions, helping us deliver a modern and innovative library service for people of all ages.

This project will help us as part of our digital commitment, making sure you have the right equipment, learning sessions and demonstrations to enjoy the benefits of technology.

You can learn more about our plans to continue improving on our Barnsley Library Strategy 2022-2025 webpage.

We will now start work to improve digital infrastructure across our libraries thanks to the funding – keep an eye on Barnsley Libraries social media for more information.

Cannon Hall, South Yorkshire's stunning Grade II* Georgian Country House and museum, has also received funding of almost £900,000 as part of the Museum Estate and Development Fund to make essential repairs to its historic roof.

Funding for the iconic building, which is home to an outstanding museum collection of fine and decorative art, will allow for repairs and safeguarding, preserving the building for future generations.

You can learn more about the funding in Cannon Hall's latest media release.

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