All you need to know as Chesterfield Library prepares to reopen after three-month shutdown
Book-lovers will be able to browse the shelves at Chesterfield Library once again as it reopens next week in line with the Government’s roadmap for easing lockdown restrictions.
The New Beetwell Street-based library will open its doors on Monday, April 12, along with other non-essential retail businesses and leisure centres, hairdressers and beauty salons.
Derbyshire County Council said it is ‘looking forward’ to welcoming customers back to peruse the shelves – although some restrictions will remain in place.
Browsing will be limited and computers will only be available for pre-booked sessions, as Derbyshire County Council library service development manager Michelle Parker explained.
She said: “We’re really looking forward to opening our doors and welcoming people back into our libraries from April 12 and it will feel like a big step towards getting back to normal.
“There will obviously still be some restrictions in place, and we’ll be open for limited browsing and pre-booked computer sessions, in addition to the Book and Borrow system that is currently in place, the Home Library Service and all the resources and activities people can access online.”
There will be controls on the number of people allowed in Chesterfield Library at any one time and customers will be asked to limit computer use to 45 minutes initially unless there are special circumstances.
Appointments won’t be required to browse the shelves, although there may be a browsing limit of 15 minutes depending on how busy the library is.
Those wishing to use a computer should do so by themselves, unless arranged in advance, and should note that staff will be unable to help with any IT issues.
The usual charges for printing will also apply and there is no limit on printing.
Borrowing audiobooks, the request service, inter-library loans and overdue items will be subject to the usual charges, and self-service will be in use where available and cleaned regularly between use with returns quarantined for 72 hours before being processed.
Ms Parker added: “We have been working closely with our health and safety colleagues to ensure our libraries have been covid-secure since re-opening in July 2020 and we can reassure people visiting our libraries that they are safe places to be.
“Customers will notice the measures in place when they visit, including being asked to scan a QR code or staff will request their details for Test, Trace and Isolate. They will also be asked to use a hand sanitizer when they come in and must wear a face covering unless they are in an exempt group.
“We are confident people will accept the measures as they are necessary to keep them and our staff safe and protected.
“We will be resuming our standard three-week loan period from April as well, and all books currently on loan will be renewed until 4 May to give customers chance to become familiar with the three-week system.
“The important thing is that everyone feels reassured and safe, and we will be keeping all aspects of the library service under constant review, continuing to monitor the guidance issued by the Government and from within the council, and will act quickly to change anything that needs changing.
“We’re really excited to be opening the doors and welcoming people back and hope this time it’s for good.”