Libraries

All of our library branches are now open (except Priory Library) but only for order and collect and to use a public access computer for essential purposes, e.g. job applications, benefit claims and to access public services

We collect visitor details to support NHS Test and Trace and make sure we can safely remain open. Find out more about how we're supporting NHS Test and Trace.

You can find out about the changes in-branch below.

Which libraries are open?

All of our libraries are open, except Priory library.

Find a library near you to see branch opening times.

Can I borrow books?

You can order books online with our order and collect service and pick them up at any branch (except Priory library) during the revised opening hours at your library.

Find a library near you to check the opening times.

How do I use the order and collect service?

You can order books online with our order and collect service to pick up books from any of our open libraries.

Alternatively you can call us to request books on (01226) 773555 and you'll be put through to one of our library staff.

Watch our video on how to use the order and collect service.

Do I need to return books I borrowed before libraries closed?

We cannot accept returned books during lockdown.  There's no rush for you to return books. We no longer have late fees on books, so please return these when you're able when lockdown ends.

Can I use the computers in my library?

You can use a computer at all our open libraries for essential purposes, but you must book one in advance. Find out more about using a computer in our libraries or book to use a computer online. Please note, computers can currently only be booked for one hour and only one person can use the computer at a time. Alternatively you can call us on (01226) 773555 and you'll be put through to one of our library staff.

Watch our video on how to book a library PC.

Can I use the printer, photocopier or scanner at my library?

Yes - printing will be available at our open libraries, but you won't be able to use the photocopier or scanner at any location.

How long can I stay at the library?

You will not be able to enter the library to browse for books.  You will be able to enter the library for a pre-booked computer session, but this is currently limited to one hour.

Can I bring my child with me?

No one will be able to enter the library except for a pre-booked computer session.  Unfortunately we can only allow one person per computer so anyone over the age of 12 years will need to attend alone.  Anyone under the age of 12 who needs access to a computer for educational purposes must be accompanied by an adult from their own household or support bubble.  Please telephone the library (01226 773555) to book so we can make the necessary access arrangements and maintain 2m distancing.

What time are libraries open from and until?

Visit our webpages to view the opening times for each library:

Can I book a room at the library?

We're not taking room bookings at this time.

Will my normal groups be taking place?

No events, groups or activities are taking place.

Do I need to wear a face-covering to come into the library?

Face coverings are mandatory in libraries unless you are exempt.

Find out more about wearing face coverings.

Will I be able to sit in the library and read my book or newspaper?

Currently there won't be any seating available in our libraries.

What should I do if I'm shielding or in a high-risk group?

We ask that you stay at home and use our online reading service. Find out more about our eBooks service.

You don't need to worry about returning books as there are no late fees and we understand that due to the circumstances not everyone will be able to visit their local library.

Will there be any face-to-face meetings that usually take place in the library?

No, these have been suspended for the time being.

Will toilet facilities be available?

Toilets will not be available, except in the Library @ the Lightbox where there will also be changing place facilities.

How do I become a library member?

Complete our online form to join a library or find out more about joining a local library.

We'll then post out your membership card to you for you to be able to access our online services or visit us. 

What social distancing measures are in place?

There's floor markings to adhere to two metres social distancing requirements. There's also lots of signage advising you what to do, asking you to use hand sanitiser, pointing out queuing and waiting areas and marks to show areas where only one customer can go.

Each library is very different in layout and size so signage may vary slightly. Staff will also be on hand to explain things to you.

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