Plan for Libraries: what we mean by ‘outreach’

As part of our Plan for Libraries we’re proposing to invest in a smaller network of high-quality libraries that are welcoming and vibrant, where our customers can expect the same great experience and services we see at the popular Central Library.

Everyone will be within two miles of a library building and whichever one you visit, it will be clean, bright and well-staffed, with free access to a minimum of 12 computers, free Wi-Fi and meeting spaces.

We’ll invest in libraries where needed to ensure they are all fit for purpose and can all provide the same range of facilities.

But we will also deliver library services in a more convenient and flexible way, at other local venues like children’s centres, community centres, health centres and so on, as well as at local events.

Wherever there is demand and a suitable space we can be there – delivering sessions like Rhymetimes, storytimes, reading schemes, gadget help, ‘click and collect’ orders, job clubs, reading groups, dementia friends meetings and so on.

The service can be tailored to suit the needs of each community and sessions can be planned in at regular times each week or month, set times like school holidays or on a more ad hoc basis.

We also plan to invest in a new web-based library system that will allow us to sign up new members and enable people to order, borrow and return books wherever we go.

So instead of being constrained by buildings that aren’t fit for purpose we can deliver the library services people want, when they want, in their local community.

To view the full proposals and share your comments see our Plan for Libraries page.