York’s libraries to stay open for essential services through the lockdown

York Explore. Photograph: YorkMix
5 Jan 2021 @ 10.38 pm
| News

Libraries in York will stay open during the national lockdown for essential services, say service leaders.

Books will be available through click and collect and there will be access to computers and printing for people who do not have these at home.

All books currently on loan will be renewed until 31 March.

Explore Centres in Acomb, Tang Hall and York will be open during the lockdown by pre-booked appointment only from Monday to Saturday.

Computer access will be available at all 3 sites, with click and collect books available only from Acomb and Tang Hall.

The Reading Café at Rowntree Park will also open every day for takeaway. All other Explore libraries and reading cafes in the city will be closed.

The City Archives are also closed, but archivists will be available to answer questions by email.

Free e-books and events

Fiona Williams, chief executive of Explore. Photograph: YorkMix

Online, Explore is offering free e-Books and audiobooks for all ages, free newspapers and magazines from around the world via the PressReader app, and a varied events programme via Zoom featuring well known authors, together with workshops and activities.

Explore’s specialist team have also put together information to support people with everything from home schooling to maintaining health and wellbeing. All links available on the Explore website.

Fiona Williams, chief executive of Explore said, “Giving access to our PCs means everyone in York has access to the internet and isn’t digitally excluded.

“Opening at York, Acomb and Tang Hall provides a good coverage across the whole city. We will be monitoring usage and feedback and will be able to make changes in response. 

“We have made everyone’s books due back on 31 March so no one has to worry about fines. We will also continue with developing more online services in addition to those already available.”

Cllr Darryl Smalley, executive member for culture, leisure and communities said: “As the city comes together once again to fight coronavirus and stay home as much as possible, it’s great to see our libraries adapt to continue essential services and offer resources for residents across the city.

“From story books for children staying home, to Zoom courses and workshops for those of us learning a new skill this lockdown – York’s libraries continue to offer something for everyone.

“I want to thank the brilliant staff and volunteers at Explore, and all those in community services, who are adapting to the new lockdown and working hard to serve the residents of York at the critical time.”

Full details including opening hours during lockdown and how to book an appointment can be found here.