Nearly fifty thousand e-books, audio books and e-magazines (47,703) have been downloaded from Worcestershire County Council’s digital library service in the last 3 months.
This is an increase of 100% on the same period last year.
More than a thousand people have joined the library service as digital members since the beginning of the lockdown. This is an increase of over 300% compared with the same period last year.
The most popular titles during lockdown made for interesting reading too with Hello!, New Scientist International Edition and Auto Express topping the list for e-magazines. Holiday by T.M. Logan was the most popular e-book and e-audiobook with our adult readers, whilst the children’s top choice was- Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J.K. Rowling.
Over the same period, new online library activities and services have also proved popular. There have been over 5,648 views of weekly online library Storytime and Rhyme Time sessions.
415 people have taken part in online coding challenges and 73 people have attended business webinars to find out how to set up and promote businesses online.
It is hoped that more customers will use these online services to complement the limited services available in libraries as they re-open.
Councillor Lucy Hodgson, Cabinet Member with Communities, said: “I’m so pleased that the statistics are showing how popular our digital library hub has proven during lockdown.
We really are a county of readers and it has been great to see that continue during the most testing of times. I would encourage people to continue using the service as we move forward with libraries re-opening, it is a fantastic resource available to our customers at any time.”
It has been confirmed this week by Central Government that Libraries are able to re-open from July 4th.
The re-opening of the county’s libraries will be carefully phased, managed and monitored and only limited services will be available until social distancing restrictions are relaxed or removed.
Libraries re-opening to customers during the first phase are: The Hive, Redditch, Kidderminster, Malvern, Bromsgrove, Evesham.
Please visit the main Worcestershire libraries page for further details of what to expect: www.worcestershire.gov.uk/libraries
For further detail on the Digital Library Hub, please visit: www.worcestershire.gov.uk/digitallibraryhub