LIMERICK County Council’s new mobile library is the most modern in the country - full stop.
It cost €185,000 and was specifically designed to the council’s needs, says county librarian Damien Brady.
“It was a 100 per cent funded by the Department of the Environment and is a super looking vehicle. It has a bold new exterior design, a purpose-built lift to facilitate disability access and it carries over 3,000 new books,” explained Mr Brady, who added that the whole project began over 12 months ago.
The mobile library has begun servicing the people of County Limerick and Mr Brady says they are getting excellent feedback.
“The mobile library serves populations that couldn’t sustain a full time branch so it is a lifeline to villages and rural communities
“It brings the highest standards of library provision throughout the length and breadth of the county,” said Mr Brady.
“It’s a very social service. For example we go to daycare centres where elderly groups come to socialise and maybe some stay. They are people who have time and have given a lot to their community in their lives and this is something that we’re giving back,” said the county librarian.
It will operate on eight separate routes throughout the county and serve more than 40 stops. Information on the routes are available from www.lcc.ie/Library or by contacting the county library. Plus all members will receive a text when the mobile library is travelling near their home.
“We have a text system built in to our computerised system whereby people would be notified by text when the mobile is coming their way. Plus on the bus there is a digitised display showing where it is going to next, like a bus,” said Mr Brady.
It carries over 3,000 new books but readers will have access to the entire library collection of 400,000 volumes.
“The mobile is linked in real time to the county council’s central computer system. The request is sent to the depot and on the next visit it will be in your hand,” said Mr Brady.
New members can even sign up in the mobile library driven by Peter Guerin of Limerick County Library. It was built in Scotland following and EU public tender.
In one of his last roles as cathaoirleach, Cllr Richard Butler proudly welcomed the arrival of the new mobile library.
Cllr Butler said that it forms a key pillar in Limerick County Council’s strategy for modernising the county library service and congratulated library staff on the introduction of this greatly enhanced service.
Josephine Cotter-Coughlan, director of services, said the new mobile library demonstrates Limerick County Council’s ongoing commitment to providing a range of quality services to the people of County Limerick.