Libraries in West Sussex are introducing a phased reintroduction of services from Monday 6 July, starting with a ‘Select and Collect’ service.
The service will allow residents to collect books from the front doors of all 36 West Sussex County Council owned libraries without the need to enter the building.
People will be able to reserve specific titles in the usual way online or by phoning their local library. In addition, people who may not know exactly what they want to borrow, will be able to ask for a more general selection of books chosen by a member of the West Sussex Library team.
Customers can complete a short online form or phone their local library giving them some basic information so that appropriate books can be selected.
People will also be able to pick up existing reservations made before Monday 23 March.
When items are available, the library service will let customers know and arrange a time for the items to be collected.
Duncan Crow, Cabinet Member for Fire and Rescue and Communities, said: “Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, the West Sussex Library Service has done their utmost to make sure that they offer all library users an alternative service to tide them over until lockdown restrictions were eased.
“Now, they are taking their first step back to a ‘new normal’ by offering this fantastic ‘Select and Collect’ service. We hope that this will get our regular library users comfortable with heading back into their local library when they re-open fully at a later date. It will also allow library users to see some of their regular library staff and have a chat or talk through any worries or concerns they may have about using the libraries at this current time.
“Whatever you plan to do, the staff at all of our libraries are looking forward to welcoming you back.”
Browsing inside the library is not yet available and all libraries will be operating with reduced hours for the foreseeable future.
Once the ‘Select and Collect’ service has been trialled, the next priority is to restore customer access to IT whilst still enabling staff to work safely.
For anyone who cannot visit the library and would like to borrow a selection of stock or request specific items, the Essential Delivery Service, which was set up when libraries closed towards the end of March, will still be available.
There are currently no overdue charges for outstanding items, so please do not worry if you are unable to return your books at this stage.
To take advantage of the ‘Select and Collect’ service, visit arena.westsussex.gov.uk/web/arena/staff-select and fill out the short online form.