Shropshire Council

Libraries reopening

30 June 2020 Last updated at 01:29

Find out the latest from our 12 August update news page.

Phased reopening of libraries

As part of lockdown easing the Government stated that libraries could start to reopen from 4 July. Detailed national guidance for libraries indicates that reopening should be a gradual step-by-step process to ensure the safety of staff, volunteers and library users.

Based on this guidance Shropshire Libraries are taking a phased approach to reopening library services. This means that initially libraries will not be open for public access, with services and access to buildings being reintroduced gradually through July and August.

This phased approach will help us to ensure that libraries are safe spaces for all, and that the services we offer can be delivered safely. It also gives us the opportunity to review our approach as we go along with the flexibility to adjust our plans accordingly if required.

Currently all our libraries remain closed. From 6 July a Ready Reads Collect service will be available from Shrewsbury, Oswestry and Ludlow libraries. Further details of the phased approach to reopening will be added here soon.

Ready Reads Collect

Available from 6 July from Shrewsbury, Oswestry and Ludlow libraries then other locations to follow.

Ready Reads Collect is an interim way of enabling you to get hold of books to read or listen to. So although the library won’t be open just yet you can still get some reading choices to tide you over.

To get your Ready Reads, complete the online form

to tell us what sort of books you’re after and a few other details. Library staff will then put together a selection of books based on what you’ve told us and we’ll contact you when they’re ready to pick-up from the library.

We’re operating this as a contactless service from library entrance foyers. Library staff will be observing all appropriate measures such as social distancing and frequent hand-washing, and any returned library books will be placed in quarantine for 72 hours.

What to expect when libraries open

In order to keep everybody safe your library will look and feel different when it reopens.

To enable social distancing we will limit the number of people in the library at the same time, we may have altered the layout of the library to help people to keep apart, and entrance/exit points may have changed.

There will be a reduced number of computers available for use, based on 30-minute sessions and these must be pre-booked by contacting the library.

We cannot quarantine or sanitise some things such as newspapers, leaflets and some reference materials so these will be unavailable until the risk of spreading the virus has been reduced.

We will continue to bring you our programme of online events and activities as we reopen, and events and activities in libraries themselves will be reintroduced as soon as we can hold them safely.