Southend's libraries have opened today for the first time since they closed as lockdown measures hit the UK.

All of Southend's libraries have re-opened their doors this morning as readers can finally browse their favourite books.

The number of people inside any library at any given time will be limited to ensure social distancing can be maintained, and visitors will be urged to try and limit visits to 20 minutes where possible.

Southend Council say face coverings should also be worn when visiting the sites.

Hand sanitiser stations will be in place across the libraries.

Items will be issued through the self-service machines in the usual manner, and the click and collect service is also available.


Councillor Kevin Robinson, councillor in charge of business, culture and tourism, said: “I am thrilled to announce that local libraries are to open their doors and welcome visitors to browse the facilities.

“We know that many people make use of our libraries throughout the year, particularly parents keeping children reading throughout the summer with the council’s summer reading challenges.

"We know that it has been a challenging time for all, and I understand the importance reading can have on mental health. 

"We can accommodate all reading ages and abilities, with paperbacks, hardbacks, large print and audio books available.

“Our expert librarians will be on site to assist with any enquiries you may have, and I would ask any visitors to adhere to the guidelines in place in each library, which will be clearly signposted upon arrival.

"Please be aware there could be queues in place in the first couple of weeks.”