Peterborough Central Library

Peterborough’s central library is not in the most salubrious end of town but is in an attractive modern building with a theatre.

The entrance to the library was inviting and, sensibly, windproof with a glass barrier. The library was well used with all the usual features. The newspapers stuffed into grey crates wasn’t too attractive but practical. There were computer terminals dotted around and there was a dedicated IT suite with a member of staff but also signs up explaining the internet was free for the first hour and that USB sticks were available to purchase. I loved this large print keyboard:

Peterborough 2

There were children happily reading and playing in the children’s section, a vending machine area with signs saying food was only to be consumed in that area. It was a Friday in the Easter holidays but there were plenty of staff and the library looked well used but still tidy. I saw self-issue machines, CDs and DVDs and a local studies room.

I am however most intrigued by the stairs that go nowhere:

Peterborough stairs

These stairs are in the middle of the ground floor but seemed to have been blocked off at the top permanently and blocked at the bottom. It also provided a light well and must have been a design feature originally. I can only assume the area above was supposed to be meeting rooms and access is now by a different set of stairs/lift or due to budget cuts the purpose of the floor above has changed.

Peterborough libraries are run by Vivacity “an independent, not-for-profit organisation with charitable status. We manage many of Peterborough’s most popular culture and leisure facilities on behalf of Peterborough City Council”.