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News from Buckinghamshire Libraries
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In this newsletter you will find out about the impact of our library system update on services, counting the days for the Summer Reading Challenge, news about Wendover Community Library, Pride Month in libraries, the Big Sporting Read campaign, updates about Chesham Library works, the new Reading Well for dementia collection, and events in libraries in June.
We are updating our library system
Our library system will undergo a planned update from June to July 2024, which will have some impact on our services and your access to them. All Buckinghamshire libraries will remain open during this period.
Please be aware of the following key dates:
29 June to 8 July
We will not be able to send notices for overdue items, reservations, expired account or PIN reset.
1 to 8 July
If you are visiting a library during this period, you will need to bring your library card to access some library services as our staff will be unable to access your account.
The following services will be offline between 1-8 July:
Access the online library catalogue for searching Access your library account online Place a new reservation Call the automated renewal telephone line Make payments in our self-service kiosks
Please contact us (
) if you need any assistance or have any issues with your loans or account.
We appreciate your understanding during this process. We are sorry for any inconvenience caused.
For the latest news on the system update, please check out our Libraries Blog (
It’s almost time for the Summer Reading Challenge!
The sun is shining. The temperature is rising, and we can feel that summer is approaching. For libraries, now is the time to get ready for the Summer Reading Challenge (
This year’s theme is Marvellous Makers, and it is all about creativity. Children aged 4 to 11 can join this reading adventure that will help them learn, express themselves and develop new skills through creative arts. The idea is to enjoy reading during the summer holidays and be prepared for an exciting new school term that soon will begin!
Children aged 3 and under can also have fun with their own Mini Challenge, and use this time with family and their carers to discover creative worlds through books.
The Reading Agency has designed this year’s Summer Reading Challenge in collaboration with Create, a leading charity bringing the creative arts to those who need it most. The bespoke illustrations for Marvellous Makers are created by the illustrator, Natelle Quek, and the logo artwork by Lizzie Everard.
Mark your calendar: The 2024 Summer Reading Challenge, Marvellous Makers begins on Saturday 6 July in all libraries across Buckinghamshire!
Visit our special page to learn everything you need to know (
). You will find out how to join the challenge from 6 July in our libraries, reading suggestions, what activities libraries have prepared for the summer, and more!
Become a Summer Reading Challenge volunteer
Share the joy of reading! Join us as a Summer Reading Challenge volunteer. If you are between 14 and 25 years old, you can help us deliver an amazing Summer Reading Challenge at Buckinghamshire libraries!
Some of the things you could do are:
Helping to run activities for children and familiesHanding out prizes and signing up new challengersTalking to children about the books they’ve read
Get in touch with your local library today (
) to find out how you can volunteer for this year’s Summer Reading Challenge or email ( )
Chesham Library refurbishment works
The building works at Chesham Library are ongoing with the new library space taking shape. Features of the new library will include an improved entrance, a ground floor computer and study area and an accessible public toilet.
In the meantime, our Chesham team are available up at the White Hill Centre (
) with a selection of books to borrow. If you require access to a public computer or Hublet, printing or a Council Access Point, please visit one of our nearby libraries (
) such as Amersham.
We are looking forward to welcoming everyone to our new space this summer and will be in touch with customers around reopening dates as soon as these are confirmed.
Celebrating Pride Month
Pride Month is a time to celebrate the LGBTIQA+ community and its achievements. Join us for some exciting events and activities this month! We are proud to support diversity and inclusion by offering a safe space for everyone to access books, information and resources.
Come and meet with Prisma Group CIC at Beaconsfield Library (
) on Thursday 13 June, from 11am to 5pm. They will have coffee and they will talk about their activities and initiatives for LGBTIQA+ young people in Buckinghamshire.
We also selected some book titles for you to explore the stories and achievements of LGBTIQA+ people in different fields of science, politics, sports and more! These books are a great way to find out more about their impact and roles in our society.
Big Sporting Read: Celebrate the power of sport with your library
Do you love sports and can't wait for the summer season to kick off? Do you enjoy reading stories about sports and athletes? Then join the Big Sporting Read (
), a nationwide campaign created in collaboration between national charity The Reading Agency and BBC Arts, that will use sport to get readers all over the UK excited – showing how sport, reading, health and wellbeing are connected.
The Big Sporting Read is a wonderful way to recognise the positive impact of sport on people from different backgrounds and ages. You will also discover the amazing stories of the athletes and how they overcame obstacles, improved their abilities and transformed their lives, and those of others, through sport.
How can you join the Big Sporting Read? It's simple. Just go to your local library and borrow any book about sports. You can find titles, including some of the campaign's official booklist, in our
library catalogue (
). You can also have fun with events, quizzes, and competitions run by our libraries during the summer.
Don't miss this opportunity to be part of the Big Sporting Read team and share your enthusiasm for sports and reading with others!
Transforming Wendover Community Library into a vibrant community hub
In 2022, Buckinghamshire Libraries embarked on an ambitious journey to transform the Wendover Community Library into a dynamic, inclusive community hub.
The project has successfully secured just under £500,000 in funding, which includes contributions from the Buckinghamshire Council Capital programme, Wendover Parish Council, and Wendover Community Library Trust. However, due to inflation and budget constraints, the original scheme faced delays. After a resubmission of the grant application, the Arts Council approved a revised scheme in spring 2024, allowing the project to proceed with all original deliverables, excluding the extension.
A library for everyone
The vision for the Wendover Community Library is to create a space that not only serves its current patrons but also welcomes new visitors, including those from marginalized groups. The library aims to achieve this by fostering new partnerships and introducing a variety of activities that will have a positive impact on the community.
Planned improvements
The library's transformation includes:
A sensory children's library, double the size of the current one, with visibility from the front of the building Additional flexible meeting spaces for community activities or private hire Comfortable seating areas for work, study, or social interaction, with dementia and autism-friendly colour palettes A dedicated dementia-friendly area/Cosy Corner overlooking the community garden Improved energy efficiency and a multifunctional reception area
Technology and collections
The library will introduce new self-service technology to increase digital access, including a self-service kiosk for book loans, loanable tablets, and digital advertising screens. It will also feature diverse stock such as reminiscence collections, parent and child collections, new Special Education Needs (SEN) stock and resources to promote health and wellbeing.
Sustainability and art
The new library hub aims to be more sustainable by generating additional income and increasing footfall. It will also feature art installations inspired by Wendover’s rich heritage and the diversity of its communities, co-designed by the residents themselves.
Community Garden
The Wendover Community Library Trust is set to revamp the library garden into an accessible and modern space for relaxation and small meetings.
Keep up to date
The new library is planned to launch in spring 2025.
To follow the progress of the project, visit our Wendover Community Library improvement project blogs. (
New Reading Well for dementia book collection
During the Dementia Action Week that happened between 13 and 19 May, we were delighted to join other libraries across the UK for the launch of the new Reading Well for dementia.
Created by The Reading Agency (
), the expert-endorsed list features titles recommended by a panel of people affected by dementia, leading health professionals and library staff. The collection has been built to help people understand more about dementia and includes books that provide information and advice; there are also personal stories and children’s fiction.
People with dementia benefit from libraries, where we offer many resources to assist them and their families and carers. If you need more information about the signs of dementia and how to access the appropriate support, we can help you.
Visit your nearby Bucks library to access the books, informative materials and learn more the Reading Well collection, or search the titles in our catalogue (
HiVis Fortnight 2024: promoting inclusive libraries
Libraries are committed to supporting people with visual and print impairments by offering a range of accessible resources, such as audiobooks; digital books, magazines, and newspapers; braille books; large print books; and assistive technology. We have got some great resources to show you during the HiVis Fortnight (1-14 June), and we will be sharing more about them on our social media pages during the next days. So, stay tuned!
Loneliness Awareness Week 2024: connecting through reading
Loneliness Awareness Week (10-16 June) is a campaign to raise awareness and encourage connections across the UK and globally. The theme for this year is Random Acts of Connection, which encourages people to connect with others in simple ways to fight loneliness. Participants can join various activities, support the cause, or engage in community events listed on the Connection Map (
Libraries are more than just places to borrow books. They are also spaces where people can meet, chat, and join in activities. Libraries can help tackle loneliness by offering social groups, reading clubs, volunteering opportunities, and a friendly staff. Whether you want to make new friends, share your interests, or just have a chat, libraries are here for you.
Come to a library (
) and discover more ways we can help you!
Celebrating Refugee Week
Refugee Week is the world’s largest arts and culture festival celebrating the contributions, creativity and resilience of refugees and people seeking a better place to live. Established in 1998 in the UK, this annual festival aligns with World Refugee Day, celebrated globally on 20 June.
Libraries are essential places where refugees can get information, learn skills, connect with others, and tell their stories. During the Refugee Week, we will have special book displays in libraries with moving and powerful stories of refugees, and also a special talk at Buckingham Library (
) on Thursday, 19 June, at 2pm.
We have activities and events for all ages. Join arts and crafts sessions, workshops, community talks, advice sessions, board games and many more.
Find more events in Buckinghamshire Libraries (
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