County libraries set to return to pre-pandemic opening hours

Residents of Oxfordshire can look forward to the return of pre-pandemic opening hours at the county’s libraries from Monday, 6 September.

During the pandemic, hours were reduced to allow additional safety measures to be monitored by staff. As these have been eased over the past few months, evening and Saturday opening hours can be restored.

Mark Haynes, Director for Customer Experience and Cultural Services, said: “We are delighted to see libraries return to 97 per cent of pre-COVID opening hours. Since reopening in April 2021, our libraries have been visited over 250,000 times, with over one million items borrowed during the same period. While this is still below our normal level of business, we are seeing an upwards trend as customers return to get the most out of the many services available from their local library.”

A few locations are exceptions to this. Littlemore and Bampton libraries remain closed for planned refurbishment work. Old Marston remains on a click and collect service due to restricted space.

Measures remain in place across the libraries to reflect government guidance and safety messages from Public Health England. Users are reminded to keep socially distant from others when visiting and not to visit if you feel unwell. Alongside this, library staff are gradually reinstating the services that users value so much, including events, rhymetimes and book groups.

Residents can visit the county council’s library webpage to check the opening hours for their local library. The opening hours are also available on the library app (search Oxfordshire Libraries in the app store) and on Google business listings.

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