Council's libraries, museums and the Cheshire Record Office begin to reopen services from next month

31 March 2021

Following announcements relating to the Government's roadmap to ease lockdown restrictions, Cheshire West and Chester Council’s libraries, museums and the Cheshire Record Office will begin to reopen next month.

From 12 April, Storyhouse will reopen with normal hours and Ellesmere Port, Northwich, Neston, Lache, Upton, Frodsham and Winsford libraries on reduced hours for browsing and public computer access.  An Order and Collect service will also be available from Ellesmere Port, Neston, Northwich, Storyhouse and Winsford Libraries.

The Council’s Head of Communities, Culture and Libraries, Rachel Foster said: “Staff will be working hard to ensure everyone’s safety. Our museums, libraries and the Cheshire Record Office have tested processes in place to ensure that all spaces are cleaned on a regular basis and visitors adhere to social distancing guidelines.

“We look forward to welcoming visitors back. Look out in the press and on social media for details of activities taking place at a museum near you and online in the coming months with West Cheshire Libraries.”

The borough’s museums will begin to open from late April.  To ensure the safety of staff and visitors revised opening times and pre-booking has been introduced for all museums. Find out more to plan your visit: http://westcheshiremuseums.co.uk/  Opening times and booking procedures may change at short notice.

For further information and details of library opening hours visit www.cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk/libraries

The Home Library Service will resume where volunteers and clients are able to, supported by Council Library staff.  Some Library services are available 24/7 online, including the new BorrowBox service.  Any library member can download the new BorrowBox app to their digital devices and access thousands of eBooks and eAudiobooks free of charge at any time of the day or night.

Reservations will resume on 12 April and loan periods will be extended until 17 May.  Libraries are also fine-free for under 13s now.  Children aged 0 to 12 years will no longer be charged for any overdue items and any pre-existing late charges will be removed from their accounts. Check items on loan by logging in to your account.

Covid-19 home testing kits can also be collected from Northwich, Neston and Frodsham libraries on specified days and times, as well as at some Mobile Library locations under the Community Collect scheme.  See the Council’s website for details.

Cheshire Record Office will reopen the public searchroom on 13 April, then open on an appointment basis from 10am to 12.30pm and from 1.30pm to 4pm, Tuesdays and Fridays.  Requests to view archives must be made in advance by email: (recordoffice@cheshiresharedservices.gov.uk). Opening arrangements will be reviewed again in May.

Enquiries and digitisation requests continue to be responded to and are unaffected.  Further information can be found at http://www.cheshirearchives.org.uk

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