25th May 2022

Make a fresh start at your local library – fine and charge free!

Somerset Libraries is going fines and charges free for ten weeks from the end of this month – so there is no better time to join or start to return to local libraries.

Since libraries reopened their doors last April following the end of lockdown, thousands of local people have started to embrace library services again. Libraries have had over half a million visits and have welcomed over 16,000 new members.

To encourage even more people to reconnect with library services and support communities as they start to recover from the impact of the pandemic Somerset Libraries is going fines and charges free for 10 weeks, from 21st January to the 31st March!

For children and young people under 17 this means there will be no charge for using any library service between 21st January and 31st March (including Requests for specific titles, DVD/Talking Book hire, charges for the late return of library loans).

The Service will also be happy to clear outstanding or historic charges for all library users with no questions asked during the same period.

To take advantage of this ‘welcome back’ offer, visit your local library before the 31st March and speak to a member of staff. Any money on your account incurred before the 21st Jan will be removed, and if you are under 17 there will be no charge for any services you use.

All core library services are and will remain free of charge during those ten weeks, but…

Charges will apply to items borrowed during this period that go overdue (post 31st March). The library has a whole host of measures in place to help you easily manage your account. Talk to one of our friendly library staff to discuss what might work best for you.

Councillor David Hall, Somerset County Council’s Cabinet Member with responsibility for libraries said “It’s fantastic that communities are embracing their local library once again, and we hope that this charges amnesty can provide a bit of extra support to those hardest hit by the pandemic, in particular children and young people.

“This is a great opportunity for people to get down to their local library and reignite that love of reading! And if you haven’t visited the library for a while, you may find things have changed, as there are a whole host of new services, including e-books, e-magazines, and e-newspapers. So, pop down to your local library and find out more!”

 For more information visit www.somersetlibraries.co.uk. You can also get all the latest news via Facebook (Somerset Libraries UK), or search for Somerset Libraries on Twitter or Instagram.