Liverpool’s libraries may be temporarily closed but that hasn’t stopped the city from getting its collective head in a book – an e-book that is.
The Read Liverpool website – www.readliverpool.co.uk – where residents, students and anyone who works in the city can sign up to borrow e-books and e-audio books has seen visits shoot up from an average of 50 to about 400 visits each day, showing that Liverpool’s Year of Reading is still going strong.
The libraries closed their doors on Monday 23 March and from then until 5 April almost 4,500 new users have signed up to access the library service’s digital resources.
March was also the e-library’s busiest month ever with almost 2,000 users, checking out almost 8,000 books.
More books, from classics to the newly published, are being added all the time – even during the lockdown. Not only that, readers can also borrow magazines and newspapers using the PressReader app.
Residents can still enjoy the digital resources even if they don’t already have a library card, you. They can sign up via the Read Liverpool website without already being a member of the city’s library services.
Users can access the e-library using a variety of devices including Kindles, other e-readers, Android and Apple devices, and desktop PCs.
David Stoker, Liverpool City Council’s interim head of libraries, said: “We know that our library service is cherished by so many people in the city. A trip to the library to browse the shelves and to choose something new to read is an important part of so many people’s routine.
“This is why we’re delighted that we have seen an increase in people accessing our digital library. We know that when people start using this service, even though they may be reluctant at first, they are very impressed with what they find.
“Even diehard fans of printed books are very pleasantly surprised when they start using one of the apps such as Libby. It’s incredibly user-friendly and has great accessibility features which means it can be used by people who usually borrow large-print books.
“We’d urge anyone who may know someone who is missing using their community library and who might not be very tech-savvy to encourage them to sign up at Read Liverpool – it’s quick and easy and they’re sure to find something they’ll want to read.”