New chapter for Henry Bloom Noble Library

The Island’s only public library to provide eBooks and audio eBooks, the Henry Bloom Noble Library in Douglas, now offers more than 600 titles for downloading.

The service was launched in May this year to coincide with the introduction of the library’s new website

Borough librarian Jan Macartney said: ‘eBooks are being very well received, attracting new members to the library, not only from within the Borough of Douglas but also Island-wide.

‘eBooks and audio eBooks serve as a  “24/7” library that complements our existing services. The bespoke software is by leading digital distributor OverDrive and with the exception, currently at least, of Amazon’s Kindle, supports every major mobile and desktop operating system, including Windows, Mac, iPad/iPhone (iOS), Android and BlackBerry.

‘eBooks have the power to transform access to a far wider choice of books for people with sight problems and are great for busy people on the move. The benefits of eBooks are many, not least their compactness, especially at this time of the year, for while there will always be room in this world for books, there may not always be room in people’s suitcases when they go away on holiday.’

eBooks and audio eBooks

  • Free to Henry Bloom Noble Library members. New members may join here;
  • Annual library membership subscription for those not residing in Douglas, Braddan, Santon or Lonan; (For more information click here);
  • Membership not required to browse virtual bookshelves here;
  • Valid library card number and PIN required to download titles. (Request a PIN online here or telephone 696461);
  • Up to four titles may be borrowed at any one time for seven, 14 or 21 days;
  • No overdue fees incurred: eBooks are automatically returned to the digital collection at the end of the loan period;
  • eBooks may be returned before their due date. (Facility not available for audio eBooks);
  • Members can reserve items, keep a ‘wish list’ and award ratings to eBooks they have read.

Separately, the new Henry Bloom Noble Library website has been developed by the Council’s ICT section and is the first to display elements of a new online brand identity being developed across the Council’s sites.

Mrs Macartney said: ‘The site is easily navigable, with quick-links toolbars for swift access to service, is regularly updated by the library team and bears a strap line that clearly defines the library’s purpose: “Somewhere for every chapter in your life.”

‘I am also delighted that the site has been awarded a gold star by the UK Public Libraries website, an independent assessor that has given only some 20 libraries in the UK gold status for having sites “that shine out from the dull generality.”’

Leisure Services Committee Chairman Councillor Stephen Pitts said: ‘Libraries are vital community-focused resources. To this end it is important we provide as much choice as possible, in terms of the range of services and means of access. Recent data from the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy indicate the public’s use of library websites has risen by around 50 per cent over the last year. Against this background, the new Henry Bloom Noble Library website has been developed in tandem with the introduction of eBooks and showcases the library’s breadth and depth of services which are already attracting new users.’

The 24/7 library

  • New PIN system allows members greater flexibility to manage their accounts remotely;
  • Members may renew and reserve books online;
  • Members enjoy free access to a range of authoritative online resources including Encyclopedia Britannica (junior, student and library editions) and the Oxford English Dictionary. and civil registration indexes may be accessed for free on the public computers in the IT suite on the second floor of the library.

The Henry Bloom Noble Library is at 10 Victoria Street, Douglas and in response to feedback from the public now opens later every Thursday evening, until 7.30pm. Opening hours Monday, Tuesday and Friday are 9.15am to 5.30pm and Wednesdays 10am to 5.30pm. Saturdays 9.15am to 4pm.

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