Occupying space on both the ground floor and mezzanine level of The World of Glass Museum on Chalon Way East, the investment by St Helens Borough Council will offer a lending library for children and adults, complete with more than 18,000 brand new books – while library members will have the option of using a self-serve kiosk, the first of its kind in any St Helens Borough Council library, as well as a computer suite and study area.
Books can also be collected from the library as part of St Helens Library Service’s new click and collect service which allows library members to reserve up to six books for free to then pick up from any library that has reopened to date. Click here for more information.
Wi-Fi printing – with the option to send documents to print straight from your own device and collect from the library – is available, as is printing from one of the library computers, for which charges apply.
While access to the library through The World of Glass entrance will be available, museum staff are still working on plans to safely reopen the rest of the building to visitors, including the much-loved canalside cafe.
Welcoming the announcement on a recent visit to see the new library, Labour Councillor Anthony Burns, St Helens Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Public Health, Leisure, Libraries, Arts and Heritage, said:
“The new St Helens Library has been a long time in the making – which has certainly not been helped with the current pandemic – and I’m delighted that we can finally open this fantastic facility which means so much to the people of St Helens.
“Our St Helens Library Service is outstanding, with high quality provision right across the borough and a brilliant team in place to suit – so to now have a library back in St Helens town centre, based in a visitor attraction which celebrates both the borough’s glass heritage and wider social history, is just fantastic.”
St Helens Council Leader, Labour’s David Baines said: “The new library looks amazing and will be a great asset in the town centre. Council staff have worked extremely hard to make this happen, and despite the extra challenges posed by Covid-19, they’ve done an outstanding job.
“I’m looking forward to bringing my two children here to browse and borrow the huge amount of new and exciting books available, and when The World of Glass is able to safely reopen fully it will be an even better day out for families.”
Ron Helsby, Executive Director of The World of Glass, said: “All of us at The World of Glass are very happy to have the library here with us. We hope it will attract more visitors to our fantastic museum and cafe, and we’re busy working on our own plans to fully reopen safely.
“We’ll be making announcements in the weeks ahead, and in the meantime we look forward to visiting this outstanding new library here in the heart of St Helens town centre.”
St Helens Library will be open six days a week and is among the first five libraries to open since lockdown, joining Parr, Chester Lane, Eccleston, and Newton-le-Willows after being identified as having the space to reconfigure layouts in the interest of social distancing.
Libraries that are yet to open are under continual review and a decision on their opening will be made when it is safe to do so.
St Helens Library will open at 10:00am on Monday 14 September and visitors will be required to wear a face covering which is mandatory in all libraries.
The opening hours are as follows:
Monday: 10am – 7pm
Tuesday: 10am – 5pm
Wednesday 10am – 1pm
Thursday: 10am – 5pm
Friday: 10am – 5pm
Saturday: 10am – 1pm