Overview

LibraryOn's grants programme is two funding rounds with a shared goal: to improve online presences and increase digital discoverability in public libraries.

All statutory library services in England are eligible for funding, as well as services applying as a consortium. Our funding is for capital activity only and, whilst match funding is not required, services can use their own funding to support non-capital expenditures.

In the first round we awarded £1.09m, spread across 27 projects. Grants ranged from £10,000 to £70,000, and projects included:

  • Upgrading existing websites.
  • Upgrading other online offers or services.
  • Piloting something brand new.

Applications were carefully considered through a robust, two-stage decision making process, involving panels of sector experts. Successful grantees have until January 2024 to complete their projects. A full list of awarded projects is available here.

In the second round an additional £500,000 was made available. Services were invited to apply for funding of projects in the following categories:

  • Library apps
  • Online registration
  • Virtual tours
  • Upgrades or improvements to Library Management Systems

The round closed on 1 November 2023 and details of awarded projects will be published by the beginning of December 2023.

Community of Practice

We developed a Community of Practice (CoP) to allow services to support one another and maximise learning, both during the lifespan of the projects and beyond. The CoP’s three aims are:

  • To share – creating a space where projects can learn from one another, share ideas and explore ways of working around digital capability.
  • To learn – a programme of workshops and seminars to support project activity and develop skills and expertise.
  • To be inspired – inviting industry specialists from library, digital and other sectors to present on relevant topics

We asked services about the areas related to digital activity that they would most want to learn more about. Using this feedback we built a programme of expert speaker sessions, shaped by our CoP but also open to the wider sector.

    Upcoming sessions

  • Why Digital Inclusion Matters

    with Emma Weston (Digital Unite) -Wednesday 7th February 2024 at 10.30am

    Register

    Previous sessions

  • Social Media Surgery

    with Ned Potter (University of York)

    Watch the recording
  • Accessible Websites and User Journeys

    with Roberta Beattie (Accessibility Tech Champion, Digital Culture Network)

    Watch the recording
  • Telling Stories with Data

    with Dave Rowe (Libraries Hacked)

    Watch the recording