Libraries are foreveryone
Start your journey of discovery here to browse what’s on offer and find your local library.
Free spaces of culture, learning, knowledge, and community that belong to you, and help you belong.
- Your public library is a free, open space where you can:
- Borrow books
- Learn new skills
- Keep warm
- Access wifi
- Entertain your child
- Research your history
- Find space to work
- Just be
- Use a computer
Frequently asked questions
Get more from libraries by learning what they have to offer. Here are some answers to questions people often have about libraries.
- Q:Is it free to join a public library? How do I join?
Yes, it’s free to join.
Your local library might need to see identification (like a driving licence) and proof of address (like a recent utility bill) to give you a library card. Not all libraries ask for this - it’s best to check with your library.
- Q:How do I find my nearest library?
Visit our library map and enter your postcode to find libraries in your area.
- Q:Do I need to be silent at the library? Can I take my child?
Most local public libraries don’t expect you to be quiet, and hold activities especially for children. They also have quieter times - check with your local library for the best time to visit.
Larger libraries may have stricter rules on noise and quiet areas for people to study in peace.
- Q:What is free to do at the library?
It’s free to enter a public library, and many things you can do there are free.
That includes borrowing books, using computers, accessing wifi and, usually, taking part in activities and events.
- Q:Will I be fined for returning a library book late?
Fines help ensure as many people as possible can access the books they want.
However, many libraries have stopped issuing fines for returning books late. To find out if your library issues fines, contact your local library.
- Q:Where can I find out what’s on at my library?
Many libraries have listings on their websites. Library websites are sometimes part of their local authority’s website.
You can also try searching Eventbrite with the name of your local library to see what’s on offer.
- Q:Where can I find my library’s opening hours?
You can usually find your library’s opening hours on its website or the website of your local authority.
You can also find opening hours by searching for your library on our library map.
- Q:Can I download e-books and audiobooks through the library?
Find your nearest library and contact them to learn more or get help downloading free digital content.
- Q:How do book groups work?
Book groups are places where people get together to talk about books they're reading.
They can take place in libraries, but people often host them in pubs, community centres or group members’ homes.
Find your library to find out if there are book groups in your area.