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New Suffolk Libraries video thanks people for their support

With libraries now reopening, Suffolk Libraries have thanked the public for their ongoing support in a video which reflects on libraries' contribution during lockdown.

The new video features the voice of Leiston Library Manager Gayla Rowling, who has been sharing cooking tutorials via YouTube during lockdown.

Customers who are isolating or looking after children at home can continue to enjoy online activities run by library staff. Suffolk Libraries’ YouTube channel has seen nearly 11,700 views over the past three months with many thousands more enjoying activities via Facebook. Southwold Library recently marked 100 live Baby Bounce and Tot Rock sessions which have been run from home by library manager Charlotte Clark.

Around 121,000 eBooks and eAudiobooks have been borrowed since the end of March, and nearly 290,000 newspapers and magazines have been read via the online Pressreader service. The Suffolk Libraries website has been visited over 136,000 times with nearly half a million page views.

For older and more isolated customers who can’t access online services, Suffolk Libraries staff have now made over 7,100 phone calls through the new Lifeline service which has been extended thanks to £2,500 of funding from the East of England Coop.

Bruce Leeke, Chief Executive of Suffolk Libraries, said:

"As such a diverse audience enjoy our service and its resources, we’ve tried to reach out to as many people as possible during lockdown. Whether it’s a phone call to our more isolated customers, providing online activities for workers stuck at home or promoting our eLibrary service - there’s something for everyone at Suffolk Libraries.

"We’re excited that we’re now able to offer a mix of the virtual and physical and will look to reintroduce more physical services as restrictions ease. Like many other organisations and communities, we’re all adjusting to the new normal. It’s been a very challenging time for our customers but as always our team have shown passion and resilience in the face of adversity and delivered some wonderfully engaging content."

Most libraries in Suffolk will be open by the end of this week and are offering a ‘select and collect’ service where customers suggest an author or genre and staff arrange a bundle of titles for them to collect.

About Suffolk Libraries

Suffolk Libraries is an independent and charitable organisation which runs Suffolk’s library service. In these extraordinary times, communities across the county need Suffolk Libraries more than ever. As a charity, we need financial support to ensure that we continue to nurture children’s literacy, support vulnerable and isolated people and promote positive wellbeing through our activities and services. You can support Suffolk Libraries by donating today