With the opening of the brand new Connect and Inspire Hub at Birkenhead Library, individuals and organisations now have access to upgraded technology, high-speed connectivity, and dedicated spaces for work, training, or studying.
The new hub features a soundproofed room-within-a-room, designed as the centrepiece, to facilitate group training or teaching sessions without disrupting individuals working at the desks or pods within the library’s dedicated section.
Community groups, local businesses, or individual trainers and tutors can hire the fully equipped room by the hour when it is not being used by the Wirral Lifelong Learning Service, which has already commenced running some courses from the hub.
Other spaces within the hub provide individuals with the opportunity to work using their personal laptops or devices, connected to the hub’s new, free, high-speed Wi-Fi network.
For those who don’t have access to their own technology, the hub has a suite of computers and laptops for users to hire.
There are also several Hublet tablets that library members can borrow for free for use anywhere in the library building, which is ideal for people who need to visit various parts of the library for study or research.
New self-service stations, with the functionality to pay contactless for a range of library and digital services, have also been installed.
The Connect and Inspire Hub has been developed thanks to funding from the Libraries Improvement Fund from the Department of Communities, Media and Sport, administered by Arts Council England.
Wirral Council was one of just 25 local authorities that successfully applied for funding and Birkenhead Library received £125,000 to make these improvements to connectivity, technology and engagement, backed with a £15,000 investment from Wirral Council itself.