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More than 19,000 people visited a library in Torfaen during August

group of chilren and adults in library
A rhyme time session at Cwmbran Library,

The number of people using libraries in Torfaen Library Service increased this summer compared to last year.

More than 19,000 people visited one of the three libraries Torfaen during August – 1,500 more than the same period last year. A recent survey showed free Wi-Fi and activities were among the most popular reasons for visiting, alongside access to thousands of books! The team is now looking to promote the range of services offered by Blaenavon, Cwmbran and Pontypool libraries for customers of all ages.

Like Sarah Hurford who has been attending Rhyme Time sessions at Cwmbran Library with her sons for the past seven years. She said: “We were so grateful to receive a warm welcome where we had somewhere to meet other parents and enjoy a singsong and play. As a parent, it is so helpful to have an activity to go to that is free and encourages the children’s interest in stories and books. Over the years, it became a big part of Bertie’s life and his younger brother Stanley. The boys have fond memories of this group, and it really encouraged a love of the library.”

Sarah and her children have also taken part in lots of free events such as circus skills, story time and craft sessions.

Cunitia Worthington, 96, has been a Torfaen Library member for almost 20 years, after moving from Oxford to settle in Cwmbran. Thanks to IT support from library staff, she has learnt how to use an iPad and can use the library’s Borrowbox service for e-audiobooks. She also regularly uses the Library At Home service, where she receives a selection of audio books every three weeks delivered to her home. Cunitia said: ‘I absolutely rely on the library service; it’s my lifeline and I love it to bits. The staff have taught me everything I have needed to know.”

Councillor Peter Jones, Torfaen Council’s executive member for corporate governance and performance attended a rhyme time session at Cwmbran Library, he said: “Torfaen libraries serves as a cornerstone for connecting our communities, creating a warm and customer-focused environment that is open and welcoming to all residents.

“It was truly inspiring to witness first-hand the extensive array of services the library provides to our community. They play a pivotal role in fulfilling several vital objectives outlined in our county plan. It’s also pleasing to hear that this year’s summer reading challenge; Ready, Set, Read, proved to be another roaring success, seeing more than 1,000 children sign up, which is the second highest number ever.”

If you’re not already a library member, you can sign up here.

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More than 19,000 people visited a library in Torfaen during August