November lockdown: To keep both staff and readers safe, Surrey Libraries reinstate their ‘click and collect’ borrowing service, provide public access to computers and continue our Library Direct service.
Following the latest Government guidance, taking effect this Thursday 5 November in order to try and halt the spread of COVID-19, libraries across Surrey County Council will close to the public. Instead residents will be able to use a Click&Collect service for library books at select locations, allowing libraries to get books and resources safely into the hands of readers.
From Thursday 5 November 2020, library members can browse the library catalogue online to reserve their books free of charge. Once residents have reserved their books, they will be notified when they are available for collection. Collections will be available from many of Surrey’s libraries.
A full list of libraries offering Click&Collect along with their opening times can be found here: https://www.surreycc.gov.uk/libraries.
Click&Collect locations will operate a door service allowing readers to collect and return books at the library entrance. A queuing system will be in place to ensure social distancing and residents are asked to use the provided hand sanitizer and to wear a mask when using the service, unless exempt.
To help those who are not quite sure what they would like to read, a ‘Ready Reads’ service was set up in July. After readers answer a few questions about the kind of books they enjoy, the Surrey Library team will put together a package of books or audiobooks that match these preferences.
Items currently on loan will not be due back before 4 December. In the meantime, Click&Collect libraries will accept returns, and items can either be returned while collecting new books or dropped through the ‘out of hours’ return slot. To keep everyone safe and as part of Surrey Libraries’ COVID secure measures, returned books will continue to be ‘quarantined’ for 72 hours before they can be borrowed again.
During this time, residents who require access to computers in our libraries for essential purposes will be able to do so. This will be on an appointment only basis. To book a slot, residents are asked to call the contact centre 0345 600 9009, choose Option 6, who will connect them to their local library.
Libraries will also continue to offer an extensive selection of digital services, providing access to over 30,000 eBooks, eAudiobooks, newspapers and magazines for free. These can be read online or downloaded using the RB Digital App and Pressreader.
To continue engagement with residents, Surrey’s library team has developed an extensive online events programme which can be accessed via their Facebook and Youtube pages. Residents can find new events daily and access over 200 videos featuring rhymetimes, storytimes, stem activities, crafts and much more.
Mark Nuti, Deputy Cabinet Member for the Leader said: “In this difficult time, it is fantastic to see that libraries throughout Surrey will be able to continue providing books and other resources to our residents. Reading books is a great way to relax and to get lost in other worlds for a bit.
“It’s great to hear, that, in addition to looking for books in the catalogue and the extensive online offering, there is also a ‘Ready Reads’ service for all those who find it difficult to find a book without browsing. Based on a short questionnaire about interest and preferences, the library team will select books for readers. I want to thank the Surrey Library Team, who has done an outstanding job of getting the Click&Collect service up and running.”