“World Book Night really works!”

Caldicot Library celebrated World Book Night for the first time on Monday 23rd April 2012. World Book Night is all about spreading the joy and love of reading, something we are very passionate about!

Library customers had registered as book givers on the World Book Night website and they gave out copies of their free books to encourage non-regular readers to fall in love with reading. We’d like to thank all of them (pictured above, with apologies to Jan who isn’t in the photo) for making the evening such a success.

The following morning we received an email from one of our customers which said “World Book Night really works, my daughter who hasn’t picked up a book in years started reading one last night”.

World Book Night’s primary partners are the BBC, the Booksellers Association of UK and Ireland, the Publishers Association and the Reading Agency.

We’ve already been asked if we are doing it next year and it looks like it could become a regular event in our calendar.


Library Management Team wonders if they’ll be on TV tonight!

Monmouthshire’s full council meeting on 12th January was filmed by BBC colleagues ahead of the ‘Week In Week Out’ programme being shown on BBC Wales on Monday 30th January. As outlined in local TV guides, the programme is taking ” A look at a council facing cash cuts, job losses and a move away from its crumbling headquarters. The local authority faces an uphill struggle if it is to keep the public happy during a period of uncertainty.”

The Library Management Team had been invited to give a presentation at the full council meeting to highlight recent changes made within our libraries to improve service to the public .

This included news about the reopening of Chepstow Library to the public on Saturday 21st January. The ground floor has, courtesy of Welsh Government grant funding & match funding from within the council, had a very well received refurbishment giving people more space to browse, use computers and far, far more.  This formed part of the building’s major refurbishment and transformation into a corporate regional hub. The first floor will give a new home to officers from a variety of services moving out of County Hall & other offices as well as existing One Stop Shop staff already working there.

Although we hear that all attempts to get the film crew to film any of this directly in Chepstow failed, who knows, we might just stand a chance of it being picked up from our presentation to full council!

First Click News

Chepstow Library held its very last BBC First Click Session at the current library on Tuesday 30th August 2011 before it’s re-location to the Leisure Centre and it’s refurbishment.

Participant feedback from the customers who undertook the last batch of sessions was very positive and they all enjoyed the five week course and had learnt a lot and felt much more confident using a computer than when they first started.  Each participant had also made new friends as part of the course.

BBC First Click Sessions will continue to be run at the Leisure Centre in early October.

Margaret Mitchell’s Experience Before During and After BBC First Click

Six years before undertaking BBC First Click, Margaret’s husband purchased a home computer following completion of an IT related course.

Watching her husband using his computer so successfully, Margaret also became curious and interested and thought she would like to take this up as an additional hobby or interest. 

Her husband started to coach her at home. This didn’t work out very well and on many occasions resulted in arguments or even both parties falling out!  Margaret also felt that she had not gained any confidence from this experience and was still afraid of using a computer and basically gave up.

Vivienne Thomas, Outreach & Rural Services Librarian had attended a WI  meeting in the Chepstow Area to give a talk about services provided by  Monmouthshire Libraries.  Following this talk Margaret also saw the BBC First Click national advertisement and related publicity on TV.  This encouraged her to speak to a close friend resulting in them both putting their names down for the short sessions which were starting up at Chepstow Library during October of 2011.

At the beginning of the very first of the 6 sessions, Margaret was very nervous and terrified of doing something wrong or even damaging one of the library public computers.  By the end of this first session these nerves had disappeared and she had fully enjoyed the session and she came back for the five remaining weeks.

At the end of the sessions, Margaret was no longer afraid of using a computer and her confidence had increased.  She had also made some new friends and they still keep in touch regularly.  After completing the course, her husband bought Margaret a laptop as a Christmas present and she has been hooked ever since and spends a lot of her time:

  • Using Google to look up and find information on a variety of subjects.
  • Checking both daily and national news and newspapers.
  • Looking at poetry.
  • Watching on demand TV services such as BBC iPlayer.
  • Online shopping and spending her husband’s money.
  • Sending and receiving e-mails to family and friends.

BBC First Click

Libraries are working with the BBC in Monmouthshire to deliver ‘First Click’, a campaign aimed at older customers with little or no previous experience of using computers or the Internet. All of our libraries are running sessions and demand for these is such that we intend to run First Click throughout 2011. Customer comments from those completing the first sessions include:
Chepstow Customer – “Opened up a whole new world of opportunities for me”.
Monmouth Customer – “I do feel I have drawn benefit from it and am less nervous about tackling tasks on the computer”.
Abergavenny Customer- “My family are very impressed.  They didn’t think Great-Gran could e-mail or do online buying”
Abergavenny Customer – “It’s doubled my confidence”.
Three Gilwern customers are now determined to buy their own computers.
At Abergavenny there is now a Second Click group because our takers for our first sessions felt they needed more time in the library to consolidate what they have learned.

World Book Night – 5th March 2011

There will be a mass book giveaway by an army of reading enthusiasts across the UK. The BBC are planning to cover the event and lots of celebrities will be involved. 
In Abergavenny Library Poet Mab Jones will be joining staff that evening to entertain people as they come in to collect their packs of free books to give away.
All are welcome from 7.30pm on Saturday 5th March 2011.  http://www.worldbooknight.org/