The Virtual Library Service.
It is run by the Virtual Library Team who are:
Paul McIlroy Amy Merriott Andrew Button
What do they do?
- They maintain, develop and promote the 24/7 digital library provided by Warwickshire County Council Library & Information Service.
- It includes the BorrowBox eBook and eAudio service, eMagazines, eNewspapers, Naxos Classical Music Library, Oxford Reference, Oxford Research Encyclopedias, the online version of the Encyclopedia Britannica, the Online Driver Theory Test, GoCitizen (free online UK Citizenship Test practice site), Times Digital Archive (electronic versions of old Times newspaper issues), the Library Catalogue, and events booking (Eventbrite).
- You can access the Virtual Library twenty-four hours a day three hundred and sixty-five days a year! All you need is a current Warwickshire Library card! If you don’t have a card you can join online straightaway.
- It has been in existence since 2007. Before that the only online library facilities were the catalogue of authors and titles and a community database of Warwickshire clubs and societies. This is what it used to look like:
- During the first national lockdown it was the only full operational aspect of the public library service in Warwickshire!
Andrew cycles regularly in dayglo yellow, writes and performs his poetry at open mics enthusiastically and listens to music voraciously (with a monthly music quiz at a local pub thrown in).
Amy makes a mean cocktail, loves the cinema and holidays in the Lake district. She also has 2 young children and an adolescent cavapoo – what is this ‘down time’?!
Paul thrumbs his guitar; gets lost on mountain tops and ring-roads; ruins gigs for other people by jumping around and singing too loudly.
The Virtual Library Team regularly ventures out into the real world and in particular shopping centres and supermarkets, to promote the service to the public. This has given rise to several comical situations.
One of the funniest moments, out on the road, was when we found ourselves stationed in front of the Ann Summers shop in the Priors in Leamington. For some reason and for at least an hour, we didn’t realise!!! No wonder shoppers were drawn to our stall!
Some of Andrew’s favourite reads of all time include: Lord of the Rings, Notes on a Small Island, Roddy Doyle’s Barry Town Trilogy and the short stories of Ray Bradbury.
Amy loves – the Skulduggery Pleasant series by Derek Landy, Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky and the Mythago Woods series by Robert Holdstock.
Paul’s selections are somewhat more niche/nostalgic! He suggests Usborne’s 1976 edition of The Children’s Encyclopaedia of Our World; The Virgin Rock Yearbook 1981; and the 1982/83 Birmingham City v Swansea Match Programme.
The Virtual Library Team recommends – The Forensic Records Society by Magnus Mills and Diving Belles by Lucy Wood.