Libraries praised

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Aberdeenshire Council Libraries are celebrating after being given the stamp of approval by the Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC).

The council service was officially deemed excellent by the independent advisory body, following a visit by representatives of SLIC to assess the quality of library provision to local communities.

The service was rated as excellent in the personal and community participation category, with praise for outreach services such as home deliveries to those who cannot access their local library, help with computer and mobile devices, and the range of writing and research workshops, visiting speakers, author talks and storytelling sessions available to users.

Other initiatives which attracted positive comments include a postal service to those who are registered blind, support for reading groups, bibliotherapy sessions for carers and those in care homes, tailored collections of books in other languages and the range and reach of the mobile library service.

The SLIC representatives met with local customers and partners at Turriff and Inverurie libraries to find out from users what impact the service had for them, and learned about the various projects running in the communities.

Aberdeenshire Council’s Director of Education, Learning and Leisure, Maria Walker, said: “I am very pleased with the positive feedback our library service has attracted and would like to congratulate all the staff and volunteers who work very hard to make sure libraries continue to hold an important place in communities across the area.”

Helen Dewar, Aberdeenshire Council’s Principal Libraries Officer, said: “I am delighted with the outcome of the recent evaluation and the recognition it gives to the very high quality of the library service in Aberdeenshire.

“Library staff look forward to building on excellent practice and continuing to extend the reach of the service through working with partners, volunteers and the third sector.

“It was good to hear the examiners say they were leaving with many excellent ideas worth sharing with other authorities.”