23 May 2019
photo credit: Russell Butler
This Saturday, Jersey Library will celebrate thirty years at Halkett Place following its opening on the 25 May 1989 by her Majesty the Queen.
The library has seen many changes over the years, from the introduction of ebooks to the Barclays Eagle Lab and co-working space on the first floor.
There are currently over 34,000 active members who use the Library’s services on a regular basis, borrowing books, joining in story sessions, taking part in workshops, working with technology in the Barclays Eagle Lab or quietly studying in the Reference Library. Local readers are also frequently accessing Jersey Library online at, with over 28,000 eBooks, audio books, magazines and comics borrowed in 2018.
Chief Librarian Ed Jewell said: “While technology has changed beyond recognition since 1989, libraries continue to have an invaluable part to play in inspiring lifelong learning, supporting health & wellbeing and enriching the island’s economic and cultural life.”
Graeme Hutchison, retired Chief Architect for the Government, responsible for the design of Jersey Library in Halkett Place said: “Designing the library back in the 80s was a really interesting project. At that time, the ‘brown card system’ was used to check books in and out but we knew that computerised records were on the way so we future proofed the building to allow for the necessary cabling to be installed when the time came. It’s great to see how the building has accommodated so many new services and continues to be a fantastic facility for the Island.”
Visits to schools, topic resource loans, children’s events and activities enable the Library Service to reach out to young people across the island, supporting literacy and a love of reading. Over 11,000 library members are children and over 2,000 of them took part in the Summer Reading Challenge in 2018.
The Library Team are work hard to make library services accessible for those people who may not be able to visit the town library or Les Quennevais Branch Library. In 2018 library staff made 792 visits to homes and residential homes to deliver books and other resources. In addition, the mobile library makes 25 stops every week across the island to offer services to people in the wider community and the Library Service is also pleased to be part of the Closer to Home project.