Wiltshire Publications

Library to reopen next month

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WESTBURY Library will reopen next month.

The library will be offering an order and collect service with bookable computers. A service that allows people to browse in the library will be introduced as soon as it’s feasible to do so. A date is yet to be confirmed.

The library’s reopening is part of Wiltshire Council’s phased approach to reopening libraries in the county. Libraries were given the go-ahead by the government to open in July. However, instead, Wiltshire Council chose to run the public consultation about how libraries could be opened safely, in a move that was criticised by the local community.

More than 7,000 people took part in the council’s consultation, with many stating their desire for the council to prioritise reopening as many libraries as possible, with different services available depending on the conditions at each individual library.

Book lover, Vanessa Johnson, who criticised the council’s delay said, “I have read the plans on the website and it seems like eventually more libraries will be open than expected which is good.  To be fair, I think they have come up with a varied service and it is certainly better than the system being provided in the BANES area which I also use.

“I will be glad to return all the library books I took out before lockdown!”

Cllr Ian Blair-Pilling, Wiltshire Council cabinet member for libraries said, “We want to get these library services open for our residents as soon as possible, and we’re working hard to prepare these 11 sites to ensure they are ready and safe for people to visit.

“We had a fantastic 7,000 respondents to our consultation, and I’d like to say a huge thank you everyone who took the time to give us their views and suggestions. We had lots of interesting and innovative ideas for reopening, and we will look to test many of these as we seek to learn from our experiences of reopening libraries in these unprecedented times.

“This measured, phased reopening of library services will help to ensure the safety of our staff and the public, while making the best use of our current resources and finances.

More information about the continued reopening of library services, including reopening dates and times, will be confirmed in due course. More information about library services can be found at www.wiltshire. gov.uk/libraries-home.