Barnsley Central Library

On the November Saturday that I visited, the library felt like a real sanctuary from all the football goers outside who were getting rather loud and intimidating. The library is in an old building but it feels quite modern inside. It is largely one open-plan space sectioned off by bookcases. Apparently this is a temporary site while a new one is being built.

The children’s area takes up about a quarter of the ground floor and has a table tennis table in it. There was a café in the other corner where I picked up a snack. The library was quite active with the noise of kids chatting and the café.

Upstairs was more for quiet study there was lots of bookstock and all the computers were occupied.

I was excited to see plans up for the new library building. However local news reports that it was expected to open in 2017 – the council website now says it is due to open in Autumn 2018. It is called The Lightbox and is part of the redevelopment of the retail and leisure facilities in Barnsley.

Barnsley (3)

Oxford Central Library

I was in Oxford for a conference so I thought I’d find the time to visit Oxford Central Library. However, it turned out that the library is currently housed in temporary accommodation while the Westgate Shopping Centre is redeveloped: Temporary new home for Oxford Central Library. When the library can reopen at its shopping centre site in October 2017 it will have a new façade.

In the meantime the Library is based in the Castle Quarter and is making the most of its facility. It’s actually a really nice large room and they’ve packed in as much stock as possible.

There is also a small children’s corner.

Oxford temp (1)

I will have to find time to go back to Oxford when the new library is finished.