TAMESIDE Libraries’ new Open+ system gets an A-plus from Tameside Radio presenter Ellesse Oakes.
Ellesse, who hosts “What’s On” on Thursdays and “The Indie Show” on Saturdays, loves the flexibility the scheme offers, allowing her to use libraries at times when they would normally be shut.
“Open+ gives you the freedom to go to the library at a time that suits you, for example after you’ve finished work,” she said.
“It makes them more available to families who can pop in when it’s convenient for them. Open+ also helps people who need the internet, say in the evenings, but don't have a computer.”
Some users have voiced concerns about going to libraries when they are not staffed, but Ellesse says she has never found any need to worry.
She explained: “I always feel safe because I know there's a phone system and CCTV. I know that while I’m in the library on my own people are looking out for me.”
Open+, which was installed at the turn of the year, is a self-service function that has almost doubled the hours people can use libraries, increasing them from 276 to 495.
It allows customers to use facilities when staff are not there. Computers are available and books can be borrowed and returned using self-service machines.
Open+ gives people greater choice in how and when they use libraries, making them more available, and especially to those who work unsocial hours.
To use the system, members must complete a quick and simple induction process. Ellesse said: “It's very fast and easy. You just pop in to a library when staff are there and the whole thing takes five minutes – 10 at most.”
She added: “I would certainly recommend Open+ because it means libraries are available to far more people than they were.
“The only thing that would make the system better for me is if libraries were open on Sundays too.”
Marketing and Communications
Ashton under Lyne
0161 342 3172
0161 342 3779