Librarian's Report, April 2022

I am pleased to tell you that today, Tuesday 19 April, our four-year vision for Essex Libraries was approved at a meeting of Essex County Council's Cabinet. This follows an 8-week public consultation that took place between November 2021 and January 2022 when thousands of residents told us their views on our proposed plan. Feedback received was used to mould the final plan approved today. We also held meetings with Library staff, and I would like to thank all those who met with us and offered us their thoughts and feedback on the draft plan.

"Everyone's Library Service 2022-2026" details how we will transform our Library Service over the next four years into a modern, vibrant and sustainable service for all.

It also commits to keeping all 74 libraries open and promises investment in training and development for all our library staff.

The plan sets out three key areas of focus:
      Library Service and Literacy
      Communications and infrastructure
      Supporting our communities and levelling up
You can read more about these areas, and the plan in full, here.

There has been considerable renovation in many of our libraries recently, making our buildings greener by replacing windows and changing to LED lighting. The heating system at Saffron Walden has been replaced after many years and we hope this will improve the building greatly.

There has been a wifi upgrade, which means anybody can now access the wifi in the building by registering their email address and do not now need to use a library card. A staff information sheet is available that may be useful for your library users.

We are also about to launch a new Library service Platform that will be our main website and will incorporate an event booking module.

All libraries are introducing new Literacy Corners and ECC have launched the Year of Reading and libraries are supporting this with a series of events.

The Essex Book Festival will be hosting some amazing author events during June.

The next Love Your Library date will be a Jubilee Special on Saturday 28th May with events for children and adults and the Summer Reading Challenge will run from 16th July to 3rd September.

Wickford library has now moved into its new location and Harlow library will be opening again in late June after a major refurbishment where Adult Community Learning will be sharing facilities. This is a very exciting project for us.

Suzanna Shaw,
Director of Customer Services

Return to the AGM 2022 page.

© Gibson Library Society, 2021