Newcastle, Wallsend and Mayfield libraries open, Lambton to reopen July 6

OPEN AGAIN: Mayfield library opened on July 1 which will be followed by Lambton on July 6 when works on a refresh are complete.

OPEN AGAIN: Mayfield library opened on July 1 which will be followed by Lambton on July 6 when works on a refresh are complete.

Mayfield library is once again open to visitors with Lambton to open its doors to the public again on Monday.

Following in the footsteps of the Newcastle and Wallsend libraries reopening to the public on June 15, Mayfield library opened on July 1, in line with further COVID-19 restrictions easing in NSW, which will be followed by Lambton on July 6 when works on a refresh are complete.

"The community has responded positively to the reopening of our city and Wallsend branches and we appreciate people's patience as our team works through our COVID-19 safe plan to reopen additional sites," City of Newcastle's manager libraries and learning Suzie Gately said.

"We are taking considered measures to ensure we meet Public Health Order requirements, which includes changes to our service delivery and preparing our spaces with additional safeguards."

The staged reopening of the city's libraries is designed to comply with current capacity limits and prioritise the health and safety of staff and the community through a COVID-safe operating model, Ms Gately added.

The reopening of the Adamstown, Beresfield, Hamilton and Stockton libraries is currently being considered in terms of their ability to safely operate given the continuing COVID-19 restrictions.

"The next stage of service resumption will see operating hours extended and two additional branches reopened, allowing us to offer on-site access to the public across a wider service area including our local history service at the city branch," Ms Gately said.

"We are also expanding our 'Library Express' model to include access to study spaces and technology, and increasing visitation time to one hour from the current limit of 30 minutes.

"We will continue to offer our home library service for the most vulnerable and marginalised in our community along with continuing the Call and Collect service to all members who may not want to come in and browse, and that will help maximise the turnover of members at each site.

"While we are looking forward to welcoming our members back into our various branches, we also expect that many will continue to make the most of our expanded online library services, which offer a convenient and contactless means of accessing a wide range of e-books, audio titles, digital magazines and newspapers, as well as music and movie-streaming platforms."

More than 6000 members have visited the Newcastle and Wallsend libraries since they were reopened on June 15.

Enhanced hygiene and cleaning procedures have been put in place at all library service points, including 24-hour quarantining of all books returned via the external chutes.