Essex Library Services are pleased to have begun their phased re-opening this week and are delighted to welcome customers back to the library.

When you come to visit, you’ll notice they’ll look at little different with the measures we’ve put in place for the safety of staff and customers, following Government guidance. Our video helps explain some of these changes. You will also be asked for your contact details to support NHS Test and Trace.

Please visit the library alone where possible, as the number of customers allowed to visit at any time will be reduced, but we do understand you may need to bring your children with you. Remember you are responsible for their supervision and they should also maintain social distancing.

The service on offer will be limited. You’ll be able to stay in the library for up to 15 minutes to browse the shelves and return, renew, borrow and pay for items using the self-service machines. Whilst browsing try not to touch too many items, as any you decide not to borrow will need to be put aside, reducing the choice for others. To help you with this, libraries have children’s book bundles ready for you to borrow.

All other services and facilities are temporarily suspended, so there will be no study spaces, computers or printing, toilet access or events and activities. These will be reviewed frequently so they can be offered again as soon as it is safe to do so.

If you are missing our rhymetimes or are looking for activities to engage with your child don’t forget our #LibrariesFromHome resources. Here you’ll find all our online rhymetime, craft and story videos as well as our ebooks, e-audio, e-comics and e-magazines for children and online learning resources.

Want to know more about what to expect now libraries are re-opening? Our frequently asked questions (FAQs) page can help.