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In line with the government’s roadmap out of lockdown our libraries reopened on 12 April with the following services:

  • Browsing and borrowing books and resources
  • Portsmouth History Centre (at Central Library).
  • Click & Collect services
  • Access to PCs and printing
  • Photocopying
  • Visitor Parking Permits

Tables for study will also be available at Central Library

Opening Times are:

  • Alderman Lacey – Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, 9.30am – 5pm
  • Beddow – Monday to Friday 9.30am to 5pm, Saturday, 10am –3.30pm
  • Carnegie – Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, 9.30am – 5pm
  • Central – Monday to Friday, 9.30am – 5pm
  • Paulsgrove – Monday, Wednesday to Friday, 9.30am – 5pm
  • North End – Monday to Friday, 9.30am – 5pm, Saturday, 10am – 3.30pm
  • Southsea – Monday to Friday, 9.30am – 5pm, Saturday, 10am – 3.30pm

Cosham library is closed for refurbishment.

The Mobile Library will also resume its regular schedule from Monday 12th April

Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
Drayton Lane ------------ London Road Sainsburys, Farlington Mayfield Road
Ludlow Road/Victory School Paulsgrove Eastney Mayfield Road Morrisons, Anchorage Park Canoe Lake

Test and Trace and face coverings

Libraries will be collecting information from all visitors for Test and Trace, and all visitors should wear a face covering, unless they are exempt.

Unless you are just using ‘Click and Collect’ services, everyone over 16 using a library will be asked for to provide their details for test and trace, even if they are only popping in for a few minutes. This is to help contain clusters of outbreaks and minimise the onward spread of COVID-19.

We will record name, contact telephone number, date and time of visit. We will share this information with NHS Test and Trace if requested, to help identify people who may have been exposed to the virus.

We will destroy all records after 21 days. We thank you in advance for your support.

For more information on Test and Trace at the library, please visit the government website.

Click and collect services

Customers may telephone their library or email askalibrarian@portsmouthcc.gov.uk to request a collection of books and/or DVDs from their nearest library. Please see contact numbers for library branches.

When making a reservation:

  • Please ask for general genres/subjects rather than specific titles, e.g. ’10 x crime novels’, children’s books by a particular author
  • Reservations on the public catalogue are still permitted
  • Reading groups may collect reading group sets from any of the open libraries. These need to be booked in advance by emailinggroups@portsmouthcc.gov.uk

Online library service

Online library services are available to residents at home, by using a computer, tablet or smartphone. You can download books, comics and newspapers and listen to music – all for free. There’s more information on our Free Fun page.

Library delivery service available through HIVE Portsmouth

The library service is working with HIVE Portsmouth to offer a delivery service.

If you are staying home they can bring books, DVDs, and games to your door to help keep you entertained.

Simply call the HIVE community helpline on 023 9261 6709 to arrange a delivery and tell us what you would like.

You can choose from the following:

  • Types of books: adults, children; large print; audio books; theme; fiction, non-fiction; thriller / romance / adventure; favourite authors;
  • Other items:  jigsaws, games, children’s DVDs, crafts, colouring sheets etc.

A volunteer will pick a selection of books and other items for you from the library and drop them off at your address – following social distancing guidelines.

Your books and other items will be picked up again after 4 weeks and a new selection delivered if you want to swap.

If you’re a fast reader or would like a collection earlier than 4 weeks – you can call the Hive community helpline back on 023 9261 6709 to arrange an earlier pick up and swap.

Unfortunately we can’t take request for specific books but our library staff can consider favourite authors and themes and provide a selection around what you are interested in.

Blind and visually-impaired residents will be put in touch with a member of library staff who will be able to advise on the many resources available for them.

All books, games, DVDs etc. will be sanitised in line with Public Health England guidance before they are delivered and when they are returned.

Social distancing measures are in place at libraries to ensure the safety of volunteers and library staff.

Libraries also have a huge online range of free resources, accessed with a library card and password, including eBooks; eAudiobooks; comics; magazines; newspapers (including The Portsmouth News) and music downloads. Visit our Free Fun page to find out more.

You can find out more about HIVE Portsmouth at on the HIVE website.

Virtual reading club

Portsmouth City Council is starting a virtual reading group for adults.

If you’re interested in joining, please email libraries@portsmouthcc.gov.uk. The reading group will meet monthly via Zoom and be limited in numbers so don’t delay getting in touch to join.

As soon as the group is confirmed, a book will be selected that all in the group will read at the same time to discuss at the monthly meeting. Readers can download the chosen book from ebook app Borrowbox. Book lovers looking to join the club will need to know how to use Borrowbox and Zoom to participate.

A library staff member will support the group for the first three months until it is self-sufficient.

Library contact details

Alderman Lacey (Baffins) library: 023 9282 3991

Beddow (Milton) library: 023 9273 1848

Carnegie (Fratton) library: 023 9282 2581

Central library: 023 9268 8057

North End library: 023 9266 2651

Paulsgrove library: 023 9268 2750

Southsea library: 023 9268 8999