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Highland Library Operator Welcomes Reports

21st October 2020

Photograph of Highland Library Operator Welcomes Reports

High Life Highland, the Charity responsible for the operation of libraries across Highland has welcomed two new reports on the role of libraries in communities during lockdown and what it will look like after the pandemic.

Chairman of High Life Highland's Charity Board, Ian Ross said, "We have been aware of a report written by the Carnegie Trust about libraries since the document was released to the public. We are also aware of the fact that Robert Gordon University, in partnership with the Scottish Libraries and Information Council (SLIC) has been awarded funding from the Arts and Humanitarian Research Council to present a purely Scottish perspective on how the libraries sector has responded to lockdown.

"HLH welcomes both reports and will look forward to being involved in contributing to the information gathering for the RGU report and inputting with a Highland perspective.

The Charity Chairman continued, "I am aware that the Carnegie report will be considered by The Highland Council along with the potential for a cross-chamber discussion around the role of libraries throughout Highland communities.

“As the Charity delivering the library service across the Highlands, HLH very much looks forward to having the opportunity to work with colleagues in the Council to consider ways in which this very important service can be protected and enhanced across many towns and villages throughout the region.

Ian Ross concluded, “I am very grateful to large number of staff who carry out this vital award-winning service in local communities; many of whom have been supporting the Council's resilience efforts during lockdown; this has included library vans being used to make deliveries on behalf of NHS Highland to individuals in rural communities and assisting The Highland Council with the operation of community hubs; while a number of other colleagues have remained on furlough leave."

Prior to lockdown, High Life Highland was operating 40 public libraries and 22 school libraries across the Highlands, as well as serving more rural communities through its eight mobile library units.

Throughout the lockdown period, library staff have been rolling out a ‘click and collect' service in a COVID-safe environment to many customers across the Highlands. The service has been extremely well received; having a positive impact and offering a level of support and normality to individual library users.


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