All the latest news and events for libraries in North Yorkshire.


Northallerton library is holding an exhibition of Armistice centenary inspired children’s art work until the end of January 2019.

Primary school children from in and around Northallerton have been learning about World War One as part of the Armistice centenary. The exhibition consists of 15 panels that show a collection of pupils’ work, a mixture of picture and writing.

The primary schools participating in the exhibition are: Alverton Community, Applegarth, Brompton Community, Mill Hill Community, Osmotherley and Romanby.

The free exhibition is available for all to view in the library first floor gallery display space, during regular opening hours.

For more information please contact Northallerton library on 01609 533832 or email

There is a brilliant challenge happening in Ripon this autumn for those aged 12 to 120, for both avid and aspiring readers alike.

Collect your free book bingo card at Ripon library to be in with a chance to win a gift card of your choice.

To play, just read any library books that fit the various interesting challenges on the bingo card until you complete a line, hand it back into the library and be entered into a prize draw to win a gift card of your choice. Pick up another card and pay again - you can hand in as many cards as you wish.

If you haven’t read for some time but would like to get back into it, if you have trouble choosing a book from our fantastic range or you want to try something new but don’t know where to start then book bingo is for you. Try authors and genres that are new to you and open up your reading world.

Book bingo ends on 22 December and prizes (three to be won - first prize worth £50 and two runners up of £25 each) will be drawn early in the new year. The more you read, the higher your chances of winning will be.

For more information please contact Ripon library on 01609 536623 or email

Age UK North Yorkshire and Darlington are running fortnightly community drop-in sessions at Northallerton library.

Age UK North Yorkshire and Darlington provides a range of quality support services for people aged 50+, developed according to users’ needs so that they can feel supported to enjoy later life. They also organise hundreds of events taking place across North Yorkshire and Darlington throughout the year, from recreational activities to support groups and lunch clubs.

If you would like to find out more about the services available or if you would like to get involved and volunteer, pop in to the drop-in session and speak with the Age UK representative.

The sessions run fortnightly on Tuesdays from 10.30am to 12.30pm until 18 December.

To find out more please contact Adrian Lindop, service manager, Hambleton and Richmondshire on 01609 771624 or email You can also find out more at

For more information about the library, please contact Northallerton library on 01609 533832 or email

Art and craft that puts sustainability at its core will be on show in an exhibition at Whitby library until 15 December.

Crafting Change is part of Art Unpacked, a series of touring exhibitions created by North Yorkshire arts organisation Chrysalis Arts and curated by Grace Whowell. Art Unpacked brings contemporary art and craft to small, unique venues across North and East Yorkshire.

The exhibition shows how a group of creators considers the issues and definitions of sustainability, addressing the exploitation of workers and pollution within the global textiles, metal and precious stone industries and the carbon footprint created by mining and shipping raw materials for ceramics. The exhibition looks at how craftspeople reconcile this with their production of luxury, non-essential items. Some respond through considered use of materials and methods. Others use their work to question our relationship with things and why we make and buy them.

For more information please contact Whitby library on 01609 534350 or email

Skipton library is teaming up with the BBC Virtual Reality Hub to celebrate the centenary of the first election in which women were able to vote.

A virtual reality experience called Make Noise empowers viewers to follow Emmeline Pankhurst’s advice and “make more noise” using an innovative combination of voice technology and virtual reality.

Inspired by the suffragettes, who a century ago spoke up for a women’s right to vote, it will see viewers hum, sing and shout along with actor Nikki Amuka-Bird, who narrates the experience, to change their virtual world. They’ll be transported to a series of colourful and abstract worlds that represent the stages of the suffragettes’ struggle, and are invited to use their own voice and consider what it means to speak up in a world that doesn’t value that voice.

Created by BBC VR Hub with Anagram, Make Noise uses archive material to retell the dramatic story of how a few women started one of the most important movements in history. Real suffragettes whose voices are heard in the experience include Edith Pepper, Charlotte Drake, Charlotte Marsh, Mary Richardson, Lillian Lenton, Victoria Liliard, Grace Roe and Elizabeth Dean.

This event follows an earlier team-up between the library and the BBC to present Nothing to be Written, a virtual reality experience that commemorated the centenary of the end of the First World War last month.

Skipton library’s BBC VR pop-up hub will take place on Friday 14 December, from 2pm to 4.30pm. Booking is essential. 

For more information and to book your place, please contact Skipton library on 01609 534548 or email

There are a range of Christmas events happening at Newby and Scalby Library and Information Centre this December.

Come along to Christmas wreath making sessions with Lin Blyth on Tuesday 4 December, at 10.30am and 2.30pm. The cost per session is £5 to cover materials. Please book your place through the library.

We are holding the following Christmas craft sessions for parents and toddlers at the library:

  • Wednesday 12 December from 10.30am to 12 noon;
  • Tuesday 18 December from 10.30am to 12 noon; and
  • Tuesday 18 December from 1pm to 2.30pm.

The craft workshops are free but advance booking is essential.

The final event is a family fun session with Magic Mike at the library. Come along on Wednesday 19 December from 3.30pm to 5pm. The cost is £2 per child and booking is essential.

For more information and to book a place at these events, please contact Newby and Scalby library and information centre on 01609 534059 or email

Cards for Good Causes, the UK’s largest charity Christmas card organisation, has pop-up shops across North Yorkshire libraries for the festive season. 

Shops are located in the following libraries:

They sell the widest range of charity Christmas cards available, as well as a fantastic range of seasonal gifts and products.

Run by teams of local volunteers, the pop-up shops in North Yorkshire libraries are part of a network of more than 300 shops run by Cards for Good Causes across the UK. The shops raise funds for over 250 charities including Cancer Research UK, Barnardo’s, NSPCC, Alzheimer’s Society and RNLI.

Shoppers are able to choose from hundreds of different Christmas card designs. Also available is a fabulous range of festive gifts, decorations, wrapping, stocking fillers and tasty treats. From colourful tea towels and festive napkins to traditional advent calendars and candles, Cards for Good Causes has a wide array of items that will get your Christmas off to a great start.

In the past ten years, charities have received more than £40 million from Cards for Good Causes, representing at least 70p in every pound, out of which the charities pay for the production and distribution of their Christmas cards and any VAT.

Please contact the library you are planning to visit to check the shop’s opening times, as they may differ from the library’s usual opening hours.

For further information about shops across the UK visit, call 01264 361555 or follow them on Facebook or Twitter.

There are a wide range of events and activities going on at Northallerton library:

Activity sessions

Children's activity sessions are sometimes held at the library during school holidays. Please contact the library for more information.

Autism drop-in information sessions

Monthly information sessions run by our supported employment service are held on the last Wednesday of each month from 2pm to 4pm. The sessions are an opportunity for people on the autistic spectrum to find out more about job seeking and employment opportunities. For more information about the sessions please contact Kevin Ward on 01609 535331.

Code club

There is a code club every fortnight on Saturdays from 10am to 11am and 11am to 12 noon. The club is aimed at children aged nine to 13 who want to learn how to code, write their own computer games and simple animations. The sessions continue throughout half-term holidays and stop for the summer. Please contact the library for more information and to confirm the dates of the sessions.

'Communicate in print' software

This software enables people to create symbols for communicating. It is ideal for people and families where communication is impaired, for example by learning disabilities, autism or dementia.

Community surgery with your local councillor David Blades

The community surgery is held on the first Saturday of each month from 10am to 1pm. You can drop-in to talk about any local issues that you have.

Craft ‘n’ chat session

We hold a craft ‘n’ chat session every Wednesday from 10.30am to 12 noon in the lending library. This is an informal, community-led drop-in session, for anyone interested in knitting, exchanging patterns and ideas.

Family history IT support sessions

Family history IT support sessions are held every Friday from 10am to 12 noon. Our volunteer will offer help with the use of Find My Past and Please contact the library to check availability and to book your place.

IT support sessions

Free, one-to-one support sessions are available with our IT volunteer at the library. Please contact the library for more details, to check availability and to book your place.

Library shop

We have a range of fair trade gift items and bags for sale in the library.

Memory café

We hold a regular memory café session on the fourth Wednesday of every month, from 10.30am to 12 noon. The sessions are delivered by Making Space - Health and Social Care Services. For more information contact Janice or Susan on 01609 771089.

Scribble set

Scribble set is a new experimental art workshop for adults run by a local artist. The sessions are on Saturdays from 10.30am to 12 noon. Workshops usually take place once a month, but on varying dates. Please contact the library to check the date. There is no need to book, just pop in! The cost of each workshop is £5, pay as you go, to cover the cost of materials. 

Scribble vision

Scribble vision is a weekly workshop in animation, computer games, sound design and special FX, for children and young people aged ten to 16. The sessions are held on Wednesdays from 4pm to 5.30pm. The workshops are run by a local artist. There are no sessions on bank holidays and during the summer school holiday. There is no need to book, just pop in! The cost of each workshop is £5, pay as you go, to cover the cost of materials.

Scribble zone

Scribble zone is a weekly creative art workshop for children and young people aged 11 to 16, held on Mondays from 4pm to 5.30pm. The workshops are run by a local artist. There are no sessions on bank holidays and during the summer school holiday. There is no need to book, just pop in! The cost of each workshop is £2, pay as you go, to cover the cost of materials.


Storytime for pre-school children is held on Friday mornings during term-time, from 10am to 10.30am.

All events and activities are subject to cancellations. Please contact the library before attending to avoid disappointment.

For more information please contact Northallerton library on 01609 533832 or email

Libraries in Craven are piloting a scheme that offers bags of support for people’s health and wellbeing.

Wellbeing Bags contain resources such as self-help books, colouring books, recipes, puzzles, a relaxation CD and health information and advice to encourage people to look after themselves and enhance their mental wellbeing.

Anyone can borrow a Wellbeing Bag free for three weeks using their library card. The bags can be used by individuals or groups at home, in the library or in the community. For example, several people could work together on a jigsaw, promoting social interaction.

The bags were developed through a Dragon’s Den-style exercise among North Yorkshire County Council library service staff members, who were asked to devise innovative ideas to improve the service, with the best going before a panel of county councillors and officers. Wellbeing Bags have been developed by outreach librarians Catherine Barlow and Alison Wheat, supported by colleagues.

The bags are being trialled in Craven libraries, following a launch at Skipton library, with the intention of extending the scheme to other parts of the county after considering initial feedback.

Ask at your local library for more details.

Other news stories and events

Volunteers and staff from 12 of North Yorkshire’s libraries have received awards for their contribution to this year’s Summer Reading Challenge, which attracted nearly 10,000 children.

The annual challenge takes place in libraries across the country and North Yorkshire’s success attracted the attention of the Reading Agency, which coordinates the scheme nationally. The agency was keen to find out how the county’s libraries managed to encourage so many children to complete the challenge.

The scheme encourages children to read six books over the summer holidays, collecting rewards along the way. This year the theme was Mischief Makers, with the Beano’s Dennis the Menace and Gnasher being a big hit with children.

In North Yorkshire, 9,650 children started the challenge, with 82 per cent competing it. Across the Yorkshire and Humber region, 41,709 children took part, with North Yorkshire’s children making up 23 per cent of that total.

North Yorkshire far outstripped the national average of 58 per cent for children completing the challenge.

A group of art students from Caedmon College in Whitby have added a glorious splash of colour to the outside of the town’s library.

The students were keen to help the library reach new audiences, particularly younger people, so with the permission of their tutors they demonstrated their artistic skills by creating a mural at the library to attract visitors. The art puts a twist on traditional tales and has had passers-by intrigued.

The work is part of a regional festival called Reading Pictures: Seeing Stories, which sees libraries across North Yorkshire celebrating children’s book illustration in a series of events and workshops in which artists, book illustrators and cartoonists have been inspiring young people and families.

Caedmon College art teacher Zoe Brown said: “It is quite rare for art students of this age to get the opportunity to work on a real life art brief and for that we would like to thank Whitby library. The experience has been extremely positive and has given the students a real insight into the demands and rigor of team working and time management. The students have enjoyed the freedom and spontaneity provided by the brief and working on such a large scale has helped to build their confidence and inspired many of them to experiment with large scale work in the future.”

Student Pippa Mesley said: “It has been really interesting producing these boards, as we were able to create our own interpretations of classic fairy tales and the whole design process allowed us to step away from structure and take it in our own direction. It has also been really engaging working on a larger scale. This has given me a chance to experiment with enlarging my work, and trying a slightly different style.”

And fellow student Emma Parker added: “Creating these boards has been both an exciting and eye-opening experience, allowing me to widen my art skills and develop a better understanding of how important teamwork is in the world of work.”

Whitby traders supported the mural by supplying materials. Library staff and volunteers thanked AGI DIY for the donation of paint and MKM building merchants for the supply of timber.

For more information please contact Whitby library on 01609 534350 or email

The winners of North Yorkshire library service's photographic competition have been announced. Photographers from across the county were asked to capture the beauty and diversity of a North Yorkshire summer and over 100 of them took up their cameras and ventured out.

Over 350 entries covered North Yorkshire in all its guises, from coast to moors, rolling farmland, dramatic landscapes, historic towns and villages, wildlife and nature.

The standard of the entries was very high and the judging panel deliberated long and hard to whittle the entries down to a final shortlist of ten before agreeing the six images to adorn a limited edition set of North Yorkshire library cards.

The limited edition cards are now available from North Yorkshire libraries to anyone joining the library. Existing members can request the cards, but there will be a small charge.

The winning photographs were:

Filey Beach - Tracey Roberts

Homeward Bound, Whitby - Gary Marriner

Kilburn White Horse - Keith Harris

Moorland Swaledale Ewe - Roger Nelson

Near Bolton Abbey - Colin Hurworth

Sunset Through Knaresborough Viaduct - Melanie Riley

Congratulations to the winners and thank you to all those who took part.

We provide a free home delivery service to people who cannot leave home, carry books or visit the library themselves because of ill health, disability or age. 

You can also receive the service on a temporary basis - perhaps when recovering from an operation - and we are also able to deliver to anyone who cannot get out and about because they are caring for somebody else.
The library can supply books in ordinary or large print and audio books on CD or cassette.

Books are selected at the library and delivered once a fortnight by volunteers. Books and audio books can also be requested free of charge.

Books and a regular visit from friendly volunteers can make a real difference to the lives of people who are ill or disabled and those who are caring for them. One of our customers described her books as "a lifeline" and another said the service "helped her stay sane during the long lonely days."

If you would like to find out more about the service please contact Northallerton library on 01609 533832 or email, or speak to staff or volunteers in the library during your visit.

There are weekly IT help surgeries at Harrogate, Knaresborough, Ripon, Boroughbridge and Nidderdale Plus libraries run by our friendly and helpful volunteer IT buddies.

The sessions provide help on anything from family history (with access to the premier family history resources on the web, Ancestry and FindMyPast), writing a CV, searching for a job, emails, shopping, to advice on staying safe online and protecting your privacy.

Harrogate library

  • There is an IT support drop-in session every Monday to Friday, 9am to 12 noon
  • There are bookable family history research sessions every Monday afternoon - get help to begin or continue researching your family history. Please contact the library to book a place.

For more information please contact Harrogate library on 01609 536658 or email

Knaresborough library

  • There is a family history research drop-in session every Monday, 10am to 12 noon
  • There is a beginners computer skills session every Wednesday, 9.30am to 11am - learn how to use a keyboard and mouse, access emails, create a document and search safely on the internet.

For more information please contact Knaresborough library on 01609 533610 or email

Ripon library

  • IT buddies one-to-one help session - every Friday morning, 10.30am to 12 noon
  • IT buddies one-to-one help session - every Saturday morning, 10.30am to 11.30am

For more information please contact Ripon library on 01609 536623 or email

Boroughbridge community library and resource centre

For more information please contact Boroughbridge community library and resource centre on 01609 536629 or email

  • Code Club for nine to 11 year olds - every Monday afternoon
  • IT support for adults - every Tuesday afternoon, 2pm to 4pm

Nidderdale Plus community library

  • IT support drop-in session - every Monday afternoon, 1pm to 5pm

For more information please contact Nidderdale Plus community library on 01423 714953 or email

All sessions are free but contact the relevant library to reserve your place on bookable events.

There are weekly IT help surgeries at Skipton, Grassington and South Craven libraries run by our friendly and helpful volunteer IT buddies.

The sessions provide help on anything from family history (with access to the premier family history resources on the web, Ancestry and FindMyPast), writing a CV, searching for a job, emails, shopping, to advice on staying safe online and protecting your privacy.

Skipton library

  • Mondays, 12 noon to 4pm
  • Thursdays, 10am to 1pm and 2pm to 4pm
  • Fridays, 11am to 1pm
  • Saturdays, 10am to 12 noon

For more information please contact Skipton library on 01609 534548 or email

Grassington hub and community library

  • Fridays, 1.30pm to 3.30pm

For more information please contact Grassington hub and community library on 01756 752222 or email

South Craven community library

  • Thursdays, 2pm to 4pm (general advice plus help with CVs and searching for a job from an expert volunteer)
  • Saturdays, 10.40am to 11.40am

For more information please contact South Craven community library on 01609 534502 or email

Appointments are free but must be booked in advance with the relevant library.

Ingleton and Bentham libraries hold free drop-in weekly advice sessions for help with any computer related problems. They can also provide more formal tutor lead support if required.

Ingleton library

  • Mondays, 10am to 12 noon

For more information please contact Ingleton library on 01609 534504 or email

Bentham community library

  • Tuesdays, 1.30pm to 4.30pm (except the second Tuesday of the month)

These sessions are run by North Yorkshire adult learning and skills service.

For more information please contact Bentham community library on 01609 534533 or email

North Yorkshire libraries have more than 400 BBC micro:bits (pocket-sized codeable computers) available for children to borrow to help improve their digital skills.

All 420 were donated by Micro:bit Educational Foundation as part of a worldwide drive to encourage children to get creative with technology and gain digital skills in clubs, schools and at home. They can be used for all sorts of digital creations, from games to robots to musical instruments.

The micro:bits can be borrowed for free for up to three weeks with a library card and come with instructions. They have built-in displays, programmable buttons, motion detection, temperature and light sensors and can be programmed via any desktop or laptop computer or can be used with mobile phones or tablets using Bluetooth. Coding can be done using a choice of editors, including Python and JavaScript Blocks.

Many libraries already run coding clubs, supported by volunteers. Contact your local library to see whether a club is available near you. If anyone would like to volunteer to run a code club, talk to your local library or visit for more information.