The Henry Bloom Noble Library has relocated from Victoria Street to the former Top Shop site in Duke Street, Douglas,
Borough librarian Jan Macartney said: ‘Victoria Street has served us well since 2003, but the new library provides greater convenience for customers in that books are housed mostly on the ground floor, with only the study area, reference collection and local studies downstairs.
‘We’re particularly excited about the children’s space, which is wonderfully bright and features new furniture, while the IT suite has 16 new PCs and two new Apple Macs, free wi-fi and charging points for customers using their own devices.
‘To mark the opening of the new library, membership will be free to all residents island-wide, not just in Douglas, for 12 months, after which membership for those living outside the borough will attract a fee: £20 reduced from £25 for adults, £10 down from £12.50 for senior citizens and £1 down from £2 for under 16s, although there remains no charge for children who attend a Douglas school but live outside the borough.
‘Also, now we are in Duke Street, we’ll be open at 8.30am for the convenience of customers on their way to work every day except Thursdays when we open at 10am and close at 7pm, and Saturdays when the hours are 9am to 4pm.
Regeneration and Community Committee Chairman Councillor John Skinner said: ‘The move to Duke Street not only provides customers with greater convenience and enhanced facilities, but also offers financial benefits in that the rent for the new site is more economical than that of the former premises, so will reduce the impact on the rates.
‘There is a school of thought that would suggest libraries have limited or no place in the digital age. This is not a view held by the Council which sees the Henry Bloom Noble Library as an asset very much at the heart of the community, and applauds the successful efforts of Jan Macartney and her team in re-imagining the capital’s library service for the 21st century and for all generations.’