Bristol museums and libraries are closing temporarily this week until 1 May 20 to help Bristol City Council maintain critical services and public safety during the Coronavirus pandemic.
In a direct response to the latest Government guidance on COVID-19, Bristol City Council will temporarily close its museums from tomorrow and all city libraries from Thursday (19 March 2020).
As of Thursday, Bristol Libraries will close and provide only online services. Fines will be waived so library customers do not need to worry about overdue items or renewals. They should ignore any reminders which might be issued.
Of South Bristol Libraries, Hartcliffe Library @Symes is already closed as is Stockwood, an extended access library.
From tomorrow, Bristol Museum & Art Gallery and M Shed will be closed. Blaise Museum, Red Lodge and Georgian House are all currently closed due to seasonal operating hours. They were due to open on 1 April until end of December, but will now remain temporarily closed.
Bristol Archives will also be closed, but virtual services will be maintained. Full details can be found at https://www.bristolmuseums.org.uk/.
Mayor of Bristol, Marvin Rees, said: “We must act in the interests of public safety first and foremost, which is why we are introducing these temporary closures in response to the latest Government guidance.
“We recognise the importance and value of these public services to communities, but they are also social spaces with a high level of interaction.
“Please don’t forget the online services we have available for both museums, the archives and our libraries. There are lots of e books and audio available 24/7 and we are investing in immediate improvements tohttp://www.librarieswest.org.uk from tomorrow to enhance our online services.”
Libraries will not be open to accept returned books – so users are advised not to leave them on the doorstep as they could be stolen or damaged with no one there to collect them.
The Bristol City Council website now has a hub page with all the latest up to date information. It can be viewed here.