Library listening pod launches tour in Berwick

A new listening pod is set to embark on a tour of county libraries, starting in Berwick next week.

By The Newsroom
Friday, 12 October, 2018, 12:00
Berwick Library.

Northumberland Libraries and two arts organisations, Hexham Book Festival and Arts & Heritage, have collaborated to launch an intriguing, newly-designed, sound-proofed booth with audio access to spoken word and books.

The pod, funded by Arts Council England and Northumberland County Council, will be visiting eight libraries until June 1, 2019.

The tour begins at Berwick Library on Wednesday (October 17) with a special launch event at 5.15pm. Limited free places are bookable at http://bit.ly/silenceinlibraryberwick or by calling 01670 626097.

It is a versatile space that can comfortably seat two adults or an adult with children.

To celebrate its arrival, Katherine Rundell, award-winning author of Rooftoppers and The Explorer, will be in Berwick Library on Friday, October 26.

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Northumberland Libraries is delighted with its contemporary, visually exciting look, which offers a quiet environment in what are now, in many cases, noisy libraries.

A spokesman said: “It is easily accessible by all ages and we anticipate a lot of interest from library customers when it arrives in their area. Families with members with autism or dementia can enjoy a haven of tranquillity within the library space. The pod will spend four weeks in each of the libraries.”

Coun Cath Homer, portfolio holder for culture, leisure and tourism with Northumberland County Council, said: “This is going to offer a wonderful new space within our libraries where customers can sit quietly and enjoy audio books, read a story to their child or just retreat with a book. We are very excited, after a lot of planning, to welcome it at its first library in Berwick.”

With the focus on attracting new customers to the libraries, two children’s authors will also be exploring the pod and holding events for young people from the region’s schools. Katherine Rundell, award-winning author of Rooftoppers and The Explorer, will be in Berwick Library on Friday, October 26, and much-loved author illustrator Tony Ross will be at Ashington Library on Wednesday and Thursday, November 21 and 22.