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Community / Book browsing to return to library from next week

The current library. Photo: Hans J Marter/Shetland News

PEOPLE will be able to browse the shelves in Shetland Library again from Monday (1 March).

After the local Covid-19 outbreak at the start of the year, customers have been unable to access to the main library, although the Learning Centre has remained open.

An expanded book delivery and collection service has been in operation to replace library access during this time.

Shetland remains in level three for the time being, and although browsing will be possible from next week, customer access to the library building will still be limited.

A maximum of 12 customers can be in the main library at any one time and visits are restricted to 20 minutes.

Customers may book a study table for a maximum of one hour. In the Learning Centre, four computers are in use and sessions are limited to one hour.

Safety precautions remain in place including hand hygiene, two metre distancing and a Test and Protect register. Face coverings are mandatory and must be worn for the protection of staff and other customers.

The book delivery and collection service will continue and the library layout has been changed again to accommodate this expanded provision.

Use of eBooks has increased again and this week there are some changes online. eBooks and eAudiobooks on the RB Digital app have been migrated to Overdrive’s ‘Libby’ app, where users will find an increased magazine selection. Online newspapers remain on the RB Digital app for the time being.

Shetland Library’s opening hours from Monday will be:

Mon – Wed 1.30pm to 5pm
Thurs – 1.30pm to 8pm
Fri – 1.30pm to 5pm
Sat – 10am to 12 noon and 1.30pm to 5pm

Anyone picking up pre-ordered books can ring the doorbell on mornings when the front door to the library is closed.

Shetland Library manager Karen Fraser said: “Customers have been patient and I think have appreciated the alternative physical and online services we have offered.

“There’s ongoing demand for library services and we are very pleased we can welcome people back to browse. We hope it won’t be too long before we can open up access even more.”

For more information and updates about library visit its website.

At the moment Shetland’s leisure centres are due to reopen at the end of the month, while the museum is slated to open its doors to the public again on 2 March.