DOZENS of libraries have reopened this week after months of temporary closure in line with the Government’s coronavirus guidance.

A total of 44 Essex libraries, including libraries in Manningtree, Frinton, Brightlingsea, and Walton have reopened their doors to users.

This means avid readers can now return and borrow books, as well as have some limited time to browse the shelves.

However, the number of customers allowed in the libraries at any one time has been reduced to help keep everyone safe.

Users will be encouraged to use the self-service machines to issue and return their items and make payments to help colleagues work safely.

Public computers, printing facilities and additional services such as recycling bags will be temporarily unavailable, but these services will be reviewed frequently so that they can be offered again as soon as it is safe to do so.

The reopening of these Essex County Council run libraries comes following the reopening of an initial 16 on July 6.

The initial libraries to open on that date included ones in Clacton, Harwich and Colchester.

Holly Turner, of campaign group Save Our Libraries Essex, said: “We are all so excited about the library reopening.

“Manningtree and the surrounding villages have missed this precious resource and it’s wonderful staff at the heart of our town."

Susan Barker, cabinet member for Essex Libraries at Essex County Council, said: “We are so pleased to have taken another step forward to re-opening all of our libraries and are looking forward to welcoming people back.”

“It has been vital to plan to re-open sites in stages in order to ensure that we could carry out appropriate risk assessments and put procedures in place to ensure our customers and employees remain safe.”

“I would like to thank everyone involved in getting us to this point and also our customers for their patience.”

Opening times for each library can be viewed by visiting,

The full list of libraries reopening this week includes: 

  • Brightlingsea
  • Broomfield
  • Buckhurst Hill
  • Burnham-on-Crouch
  • Canvey Island 
  • Chigwell 
  • Chipping Ongar
  • Coggeshall
  • Danbury
  • Earls Colne
  • Frinton
  • Galleywood
  • Great Baddow
  • Great Parndon
  • Great Tarpots
  • Greenstead
  • Hadleigh
  • Halstead
  • Hatfield Peverel
  • Hockley
  • Hullbridge
  • Ingatestone
  • Laindon
  • Loughton
  • Manningtree
  • North Melbourne
  • North Weald
  • Old Harlow
  • Pitsea
  • Prettygate
  • Saffron Walden
  • Shenfield
  • Sible Hedingham
  • South Woodham Ferrers
  • Springfield
  • Stansted
  • Tiptree
  • Tye Green
  • Waltham Abbey
  • Walton
  • West Mersea
  • Wickford
  • Wivenhoe
  • Writtle