Wolverhampton will be celebrating the first-ever National Libraries Week with a host of activities across the City.
CILIP, the library and information association, is organising the week-long celebration of Britain’s much-loved libraries from Monday to Friday, 9-14 October, 2017 – and Wolverhampton’s libraries will be marking it with a wide-ranging programme for all the family.
As well as regular activities such as story times and children’s clubs, it includes author talks, poetry events and digital workshops.
It gets underway on Saturday 7 October with African Tales with storyteller Grace Bennett at Central Children’s Library at noon, which is also marking Black History Month. On the same day, Wednesfield Library will host a talk on the Second World War by Guy McElvery from noon-12.45pm.
Pop up poet Jane Seabourne will be on the prowl at Central Library on Monday 9 October from 11am-1pm as she completes a mini residency project, while volunteers from the Coventry Building Society will be offering help to job hunters about CV writing and online applications at Central Library from 2pm-4pm.
Also on Monday, writer and performance poet Emma Purshouse will be sharing entertaining anecdotes about her life as a professional writer at Warstones Library from 5.45pm-6.45pm.
Central Library will be marking World Mental Health Day on Tuesday 10 October as mental health practitioners hold a tea and talk from 10am-2pm, while a check and send service for people who wish to apply for or renew blue badges will be taking place at East Park Library from 9am-1pm.
Other attractions on Tuesday include storytime for under 5s at Warstones Library from 2.15pm-3pm, in which Peppa Pig will go to the dentist, while local author Guy McElvery will be talking about his latest publication, The Stranger at the Window, at Penn Library from 3pm-3.45pm.
Emma Purshouse comes to Central Library on Wednesday 11 October to host a workshop on creating “flash fiction” from 4pm-6pm. People will be able to take part in three fun activities which will introduce them to the art of writing short stories.
Children aged five and over can get creative at a Lego club at Finchfield Library on Thursday 12 October from 5pm-6.30pm, while digital champions from Lloyds Bank will be on hand to help people get online and improve their computer skills at Central Library from 10.30am-12.30pm.
The programme continues on Friday 13 October with an afternoon of tea and poetry at Ashmore Park Community Hub hosted by Marion Cocklin and Bert Flitcroft from 1pm-2.15pm, and concludes with three activities on Saturday 14 October.
They include a pop up workshop for 16 to 25-year-olds on writing haiku-sized poems for bookmarks led by Jasmine Kardos at Central Library from 11am-1pm, fun with magician Ronnie Cracker at Bilston Library from 1pm-2pm and a Diwali-themed storytime for younger visitors to Central Library from 12.15pm-1pm.
Councillor John Reynolds, the City of Wolverhampton Council’s Cabinet Member for City Economy, said: “Through our Transforming Libraries Strategy we are responding to demand from customers for more events in our libraries, and we are delighted to present this wide-ranging programme for National Libraries Week.
“It celebrates the fact that libraries are no longer just about books, but are places where people can explore a hobby, brush up on their IT skills, find a job or simply have some fun.”
Events are free but due to limited spaces people are advised to book sessions in advance by contacting the relevant library. Full details are available at www.wolverhampton.gov.uk/libraries.
Some 250 million visits were made to public libraries in Britain in 2016. For more information about National Libraries Week, please visit www.librariesweek.org.uk.