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Manchester libraries open up as ‘warm spaces’ as the temperature drops

As the chill of autumn settles in and winter approaches, Manchester residents are welcome to find warmth and comfort beyond their homes – in their local libraries.

In an innovative initiative, every library in Manchester is transforming into a ‘warm space,’ offering a welcoming refuge for individuals of all ages seeking respite from the cold.

Here’s what you can expect when you step into one of Manchester’s libraries this winter:

Free Hot Drinks and Cozy Spaces

Starting from October 30th, 2023, until February 2024, libraries across the city are providing free self-service hot drinks.

Visitors are encouraged to enjoy the warmth and comfort of the library’s inviting spaces.

While the hot drinks are complimentary, there’s an opportunity to contribute to the community spirit by making a voluntary donation in the provided donation box.

Connectivity and Information

Libraries are not just about books; they are also hubs for connectivity.

Visitors can access free internet and Wi-Fi services, ensuring everyone stays connected without worrying about the cost. Need information or advice? Knowledgeable staff are available to assist and can also guide visitors to other support agencies if necessary.

Family-Friendly Activities

For families looking for a welcoming space to spend time together, six libraries are going the extra mile.

Forum Library in Wythenshawe, Longsight Library, Newton Heath Library, North City Library in Harpurhey, Powerhouse Library in Moss Side, and Withington Library are offering a selection of play items and games suitable for children aged 0 to 12+.

It’s an opportunity for families to enjoy quality time in a positive environment.

Free SIM cards for Internet Access

Recognising the challenges faced by those struggling to pay for data, all Manchester libraries are now providing free sim cards loaded with free data.

Residents over 18 years old can acquire these sims, ensuring six months of free internet access without any monthly top-up requirements. To obtain your free sim, simply visit your local library.

Digital Support

For individuals who have internet access but lack the skills or confidence to use it effectively, help is available.

Libraries, in collaboration with Let’s Get Digital, are offering digital drop-ins one day a week.

Simply text 07860 064128 for assistance and guidance.

Age-Friendly Libraries

Manchester’s libraries have achieved ‘Age Friendly Libraries’ status, proudly displaying the new Manchester Age Friendly Library Logo.

Older residents are invited to attend weekly Age Friendly drop-ins at various library locations, providing an opportunity for socialization, access to information, and engaging activities.

Warm Hub for Families

With the cost of living crisis in mind, several libraries are going above and beyond to support families.

In addition to the usual amenities, selected libraries, including Forum Library, Longsight Library, Newton Heath Library, North City Library, Powerhouse Library, and Withington Library, are offering toys and games for children and families to enjoy during their visit.

This winter, Manchester’s libraries are not just repositories of knowledge; they are becoming community hubs, with warmth, connectivity, and support for all residents.

So, if you need warmth, company, or simply a comfortable place to spend your day, your local library awaits with open arms.

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