The Henry Bloom Noble Library is now fully operational.
The library had been closed at the height of the pandemic then re-opened with limited facilities as COVID-19 restrictions began to be eased.
Borough Librarian Jan Macartney said: ‘We’re very grateful to the public for their understanding when we had to close and during the period when we could only offer a reduced service, but now we’re delighted to be 100 per cent “back in business”.
‘While frustrating, the temporary closure provided an opportunity for us to reassess our operation. The main outcome from this is that everyone who wants to use one of our PCs or the free wi-fi will now need to become a member of the library.
‘We’ve also put an enhanced cleaning regime in place, so all PC users will be required to sanitise their hands before use and wipes will be available from the counter to wipe down keyboards, mice and screens before and after use.
‘Library membership is free for all Island residents and, as from April this year, overdue charges were abolished; there’s also a fines amnesty at the moment for all overdue books. So, with life slowly returning to normal, now is a good time for people to check out their cupboards and drawers – and even look under the bed - for outstanding library books, because all of us at HBNL would love to welcome back not only our customers but also any of our overdue books.’
Regeneration and Community Committee Chair Councillor Stephen Pitts said: ‘A fully functioning Henry Bloom Noble Library will have been sorely missed. It plays an important role that extends far beyond the lending of books: from providing an activity space for encouraging young readers to showcasing the works of local and visiting authors and, more generally, offering limitless learning opportunities. I’m therefore pleased that the library has returned to its rightful place at the heart of community life in Douglas.’