Libraries’ Strategy 2024-2026
Libraries Blueprint (Universal Offers)
- Reading – engage, imagine, and discover.
- Health and Wellbeing – healthier, happier, and connected.
- Information and Digital – informed, inspired, and innovative.
- Culture and Creativity – opportunity, participation, enrichment & understanding.
What We Do
- Offer a wide choice of reading resources for pleasure, research, and learning, enabling all ages to enjoy reading.
- Promote healthy living through access to self-management resources, weight management courses, health checks, and help to source and use trusted information. Plus, we ensure each library provides vision and print impaired services for all ages.
- Provide quality information and digital support, helping everyone to get online, feel safe online and learn new skills and technologies.
- Help fledgling businesses to unlock a wide range of trusted business information and intellectual property services.
- Fun stuff for all ages and abilities, designed to spark curiosity and imagination, including crafts, music, performance, and invention.
What Matters to Us
- Putting our customers first and making a social difference through increasing positive community engagement.
- Achieving direct well-being impacts for all our users.
- Working with local partners, providing employment and training opportunities, and being environmentally responsible.
Our Plan of Action (next two years)
- Increasing participation through whole family learning and cultural offers.
- Extending the digital offer to support those who are not able/wishing to use technology.
- Working with schools to encourage engagement, enhancing our offer for children with special educational needs.
- Expanding cross-company working to offer a wider choice of health-related services.
- Ensuring our business products are up to date and supporting local entrepreneurs.
- Always improving existing collections to support the blind and visually impaired.
Looking Further Ahead (beyond 2026)
- In partnership, develop a future libraries model that is sustainable and effective.
- Actively pursue increased digital inclusion, including grant funded opportunities.
- Continue to embed ‘Green Libraries’ principles and environmental action plans.
- Extend our health partnerships to maximise potential for wider integration and benefit.
- Review our technology to ensure its fit for purpose and supporting both staff and customers.
- Explore opportunities for libraries to offer better access to learning and study/homework support.
Background Notes - Local Libraries Strategy
In brief, libraries deliver a wealth of community Services supporting all life stages:
- From Birth – Book-start provides access to free learn to read materials for under 5s
- Active Families – story and rhyme times, music and movement, craft and themed activities, book clubs, games clubs, code clubs, summer reading challenges and holiday fund activities. With access to study, public network computers, and use of 3D scanning and 3D printing.
- Life-long Learning – literacy for all ages, readers groups, book promotions, assistance with genealogy research and local history groups. Plus, access to digital literacy, from start-up advice on the basics through to coding
- Vulnerable Residents – Library Home Delivery Service – a vital community facility ensuring our house-bound residents can continue to access reading materials, including talking books, with extended services also provided to participating care homes.
- Wellbeing for all ages – community activities designed to support wellbeing and social interaction. Trusted signposting to health-related information/support and to local governance information/agencies/advisory services.
- Employability – providing access to information and support aiding upskilling and/or back to work confidence building.
- Enjoying life – access to reading and listening for pleasure, entertainment, and company, for all ages.
Libraries also support local business growth and economic development:
- BIPC Services (Business and Intellectual Property Centre), backed by the British Library and available across a network of regional hubs. Grimsby Central Library is part of the Hull and Humber network. This includes access to business information – COBRA (complete business reference advisor), UK and global company information and market research materials. The network links the user to advisers who can assist with intellectual property, British Standards, Patent applications etc. Contact is available online and within branches.
- Start Up Support – Access to partnered workshops linked to business planning, lean start-ups, digital marketing and managing finances, all part of the BIPC network, available online and via live streaming. Plus, signposting to further talks, webinars and one to one support from within the business sector.
- Libraries Within Town Centres – provide potential to support an emerging nonretail offer and to attract footfall through either leisure use or business use.
National Libraries in Brief
All statutory library services come under the Government’s Department of Culture, Media, and Sport (DCMS). A Libraries Task Force set up by DCMS to support the work undertaken within the national network of libraries has the following key areas of focus:
- Literacy and reader development
- Employability (including digital skills)
- Health and wellbeing