Sometimes, I feel so old. On a day when John Lydon – the man I once thought of as a foul mouthed, anarchist, punk musician – came out in support of libraries, I also received an email from Blackpool Library Service. Reading it made me realise that I was looking at them in the wrong light too.

Back in the day, I visited the library every week to pick my three books, usually an Enid Blyton, maybe a Nancy Drew and one of the series by Laura Ingalls Wilder. Choices made, books stamped, I was on my way home in a matter of minutes. Yep, libraries were for books and books alone. How things have changed!

As National Libraries Day approaches, things are really getting into gear at Blackpool’s branches, and there are even events organised in conjunction with the Grundy Art Gallery. So come on down and be amazed – you could even take home a couple of library books too!

Horse and Bamboo is bringing a production of Hansel and Gretel to the Grand Theatre in February, and events organised in conjunction with this show begin on Saturday 31 January with craft workshops at Moor Park Library from 10 to 11.30am and Palatine Library  from 1 to 2.30pm. This is suitable for ages three plus and is free but booking is essential.

On Wednesday, February 11, there is a puppet making artist talk with the Creative Director of Horse and Bamboo at Central Library from 5.30 to 7.00pm for ages 16 plus. This costs £1 and booking is, again, essential.

Also on Saturday 31 January, there is a See and Do event entitled Cirque de Papier with Bonker*s Clutterbucks from 10.30am to 12.00pm. Meet at the Grundy at 10.30 for a gallery tour, followed by paper-based activity at Central Library. This activity is for 6 to 12 year olds and costs £3. Booking is essential.

Want to learn how to access Blackpool Libraries’ collection of e-books? Come along to the free Digital Drop-in on Wednesday, February 4 at Moor Park Library between 11am and 12.30pm to find out how to do it on your laptop / tablet/ smartphone.

There is a Dementia Book Launch on Thursday, February 5 at Central Library, with lots of things happening including knitting, cakes, museum reminiscence, Treasure Trove Pop-Up Museums and music from the Fylde Ukelele Network. The event will be officially opened at 11am.

National Libraries Day is on Saturday, February 7.Events include:

Central Library:

  • DIY Publishing Workshop with DigiEnable on online publishing and blogging. Age 16+, 1-4pm, £3. Booking essential.
  • Family History Taster. Drop in, 10-1pm at the Family History Room upstairs.
  • Dark Matter Games. 12.30-4.30pm. All ages. Board games, video games, roleplaying games etc. in the Brunswick Room (runs weekly).
  • Dr Who Club. 12-1pm. Junior Library. £1. (first Saturday of each month).
  • Jobs and Skills Club. 2-4pm in the Computer area.

Moor Park: 

  • Dan Worsley’s Impossible Tales book signing. 10-11am. All books £5.
  • Local History Talk with Tony Sharkey: Old Bispham from the Ralph Smedley Collection. 2.45pm refreshments for a 3pm start.

The month ends with another See and Do event entitled Post Pop Printmaking with Alan Birch. 10.30-12.00. Meet at Grundy 10.30 for gallery tour, activity at Central Library.This activity is for 6 to 12 year olds and it costs £3. Booking essential.

For more information, visit the Blackpool Libraries Service website.


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