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Redbridge libraries set for major upgrade

PUBLISHED: 09:30 05 February 2019

Owner Vivian Archer in the new part of the bookshop. Picture: Ken Mears

Owner Vivian Archer in the new part of the bookshop. Picture: Ken Mears

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Redbridge libraries will undergo major upgrades over the next few months to improve online and interactive services for users.

The new system will make it easier and quicker for residents to download eBooks and a new app will be launched, allowing customers to access their library on the move.

This is also an opportunity for budding authors and local publications to share their work via the application.

Leader of Redbridge Council, Councillor Jas Athwal said: “This is a fantastic development for our local libraries.

“The new and improved online library services will help make books more accessible as well as providing brand new opportunities to local authors and journalists.

“We’re so fortunate to have such a widely used library network in Redbridge and I remain committed to investing in services like these, making our libraries future-proof and accessible for generations to come.”

Library online systems will be updated from February 23 until mid-March.

During the works, certain services will be unavailable to staff and customers.

It will not be possible to renew items, make reservations or search the library catalogue.

A fines amnesty will be in place until March 31, so no customer will incur any new fines on their accounts during the period of transitioning to the new system.

Referrals to the collection agency will also be suspended during this period.

Any fines and charges on customer accounts prior to February 1 will remain on accounts.

Overdue notices will also not be issued.

Once the new system is up and running, notification of overdue items will be via text or email only, so customers are advised to make sure that their library has their most up to date contact details.

Another disruption during the upgrade is in regard to “new release”.

The numbers of new books libraries will receive will be limited until April, so customers might have to wait a little longer for books to come into their local library.

It will also not be possible to request any books from Redbridge’s partner libraries during this period.

Joining the library, using the public computers and borrowing items will be unaffected during the update.

“We apologise to all our library customers for the disruptions,” Cllr Athwal added.

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