Browsing back soon at Bishop's Stortford library
Bookworms will soon be able to resume browsing at Bishop's Stortford library.
Libraries authority Herts County Council is rolling out a new protocol for borrowers from Monday (August 3), when services will be restored at St Albans, Stevenage Central, Watford Central and Welwyn Garden City.
Bishop's Stortford's library in The Causeway will be part of a second wave of reopenings, but a date has not yet been set.
Visitors will be able to enter the library for up to 15 minutes to browse the shelves and to use the self-service kiosks for borrowing and returning items.
Social distancing measures will be in place, including queue management, screens on enquiry desks, hand sanitiser stations and quarantine areas for returned books. Customers will be encouraged to wear face coverings during their visit.
In addition, the People's Network computers will be available for one-hour slots for customers who book. There will be 15 minutes between bookings to allow for cleaning.
Opening hours will be 10am to 4pm to allow for additional cleaning and to enable staff to restock the shelves.
Ready Reads pre-selected packs of books will not be available from libraries that reopen, but can be requested for collection from another participating branch.
Cllr Terry Douris, HCC's cabinet member for libraries, said: "I'm sure that the news of these libraries reopening will be welcomed by library visitors who I know have missed the opportunity to choose their own books.
"The extension of this to provide computer access to people who may have had little or no opportunity to access online services during lockdown will contribute to our economic recovery and is an important step towards resuming our wider library offer."