There’s always something happening at the library to entertain children.

From story times to code clubs to craft days, libraries across North Yorkshire offer much more than just a great selection of books for children of all ages.

And with the half-term holiday here, your library is a great place for parents and carers to find activities to entertain their children, whatever their age.

To get a flavour of what libraries offer, we dropped in to an animal-themed creative play session for under-fives at Harrogate library. It was part of a week of activities for pre-school children that also included musical story time, a code-a-pillar and Duplo sessions and a pop-up toy library.


Catherine Skyvington regularly attends library activities with her sons James, four, and Lucas, one, to the creative play. She said: “From a young age I worked in libraries, so I thought it would be nice to bring my own children. I presumed it was just books, but obviously it’s not. There are some fantastic activities going on and it’s just such a lovely, warm environment for them to come to to meet lots of children of different ages. I’ve got a one-year-old, so it’s nice to get him socialising. It’s just great, we love it.”

Other mums echoed the sentiment.

Sarah Galaud joined the library just before attending the play session with her son, Digby. She said: “We just moved here six months ago and I heard about this from his brother’s school friends. It was really easy. We signed up in five minutes and came to the group. Now I know they are on Facebook I will be following them.”

Saima Abid took daughter Aroush. “It is so friendly and the staff are brilliant every time we come,” she said.

Jane Trigoso, library supervisor at Harrogate, said: “There’s always something going on. We have our regular story times on a Monday and Friday and musical story times on the first Wednesday of the month. So do come along and find out what’s going on in your local library.”

There are events at libraries across the county all year round. Half-term week is a great time to test the water. Check out our half-term list or pop into your library to ask about regular activities.

Half–term activities


Thursday 20 February 9 –11am Stay and Play FREE event for under-5s, parents and carers.


Story time for under-5s 10.15-10.45am

Catterick, Richmond and Colburn Community Libraries

  • North Yorkshire Rotters (recycling event) – drop-in to teach your little ones about topics of home composting, love food hate waste and recycling
  • Richmond on Mon 17th Feb 11-2pm
  • Colburn on Tues 18th 2.30-4.30pm
  • Catterick Wed 19th Feb 11-2pm


Thursday 20th February ‘ Indian dance’ event will take place on 10am - 12 

Eastfield, More than Books

19th February -Free” Lego Day” event   11am -3pm for all ages young and old  with refreshments.


  • Saturday 15: Lego Club 10.30 – 12 noon
  • Friday 21: Digital Day for Juniors event 10.30 – 12.00 noon free but please contact the library to book
  • Story time for under 5s  11-12
  • Saturday 22: Lego Club 10.30 – 12.00 noon


  • Basia has planned lots of events for International Mother Language Day, including:
  • 20th February Polish Storytime Thursday 10:30am - 12 noon
  • 20th of February. Spanish Language taster classes One at 2pm for Infants (ages 4-7) and one at 2:45pm for Juniors (8-11). The classes are 30 minutes each.
  • 15th February More than Movies at 2pm-4pm.


“Fun with Lego” morning Saturday 22nd Feb, 10.30-12.30. It is a free and no booking required.


Pantomime Treasure Hunt (set off from the library) from 15th - 28th February 2020.


  • Story Time Mondays 10:15-10:45
  • Relaxed Story Time Fridays 10:30-11:00
  • Baby Rhyme Time Fridays 2:15-2:45
  • ‘Professor Pots’ science workshop TBC


  • Lego Club Sat 15th and 22nd Feb 10-12,
  • Storytime Weds 19th Feb 2.15 -3pm, 
  • Rosie The Therapy Dog (come and meet Rosie our new reading dog – soft launch ahead of weekly sessions being launched after half term) – Weds 19th 10.30-11.30

Newby and Scalby  

Wednesday 19 Feb “Musical fun for under Fives” with Kathy Seabrook, 10.30 £2.00.


Emergency Museum

Tuesday 18 February, 10.00am-3.00pm a free event

  • 10am meet Denise, crocodile dentist for a fee interactive storytime (under 5s and their families)
  • 11.00am – 12noon and 12.30pm-3.00pm discover Thackray Museum Ambulance
  • 1.00pm - 2.00pm become a forensic scientist and extract the DNA from fruits


Wednesday 19 February, 1.30pm; 2.20pm & 3.10pm (3 sessions each lasting approx. 40mins)

Talks about some of the amazing ZooLab animals before you get up-close and hands-on!

Booking essential

Age 5+ but families welcome

£1 for library members, £2 non-members. It’s free to join the library

Special Animal Story Time

Friday 21 February, 10.00am-10.45am

Animal themed stories and craft

Suitable 4+ but all welcome

Free event

Norton Hive  

Saturday 22nd Feb 10:30-12:00. “Busy Bees” Craft Club- “Don’t forget the birds”. £1 per child. Places are limited so please phone the library by Saturday 15th February to book your place.


  • Thursday 20th February 10.30am-11.30am “Creating Illustrations From Your Favourite Stories” free art workshop for children ages 6 to 13. Places are limited so must be pre-booked.
  • Friday 21st February 11am-11.30am “Story, Craft & Rhyme Time” free story-time with craft option. All welcome (no pre-booking required).


  • Tuesday 18th Feb 11.00am - 12.30pm £2.00 ‘The Secret Science of Superheroes’ Science themed family event - Ever wondered what Spiderman eats for breakfast? Join Hull University Lecturer and author of ‘The Science of Superheroes’ Mark Lorch for a fun and fact filled morning. Suitable for ages 8+. Please book a place.
  • Tuesday 18th Feb 11.00am - 12.30pm Creative Writing event with author Abi Marsh. Join author Abi Marsh for creative writing tips and support for young adults and the young at heart. Suitable for ages 13+. Please book a place.
  • Wednesday 19th Feb 10.30 – 12.30 £2.00 Saviour Pirotta Author event - Join popular children’s author Saviour Pirotta for an exciting insight into amazing adventures and writing super stories. Suitable for ages 5+. Please book a place


  • Monday 17 February, 4 sessions during the day (10 – 10.30, 11.30 – 12, 2 – 2.30, 3.30 – 4)The Apprentice Witch Escape room event– can you solve the puzzles to free Arianwyn? For ages 7-11
  • Friday 21 February 10am – 4pm: Owls in the library with York Birds of Prey (an opportunity for children/families to come along and learn more about the birds, how to handle them etc. This is a drop-in event
  • Friday 21 February 4 – 5pm Children’s author James Nicol, talking about the world of Arianwyn and the Apprentice Witch series. For children aged 6+
  • Regular Rhymetime on Monday mornings 10.30am and storytime Wednesday mornings 10.30 – 11am


Friday 21 February 10.30am – 12.30pm Techmakers – get with the program with our digital teach event! VR, Lego robots, micro:bits, MakeyMakeys and more. FREE drop-in for ages 8+.


  • Monday 17th Feb 1.30-3pm – Children’s Bird themed craft event – making bird feeders, create your own birds- This will coincide with ongoing Great Garden Bird Watch. For all ages
  • Monday 17th   Coding on Minecraft 1pm to 4pm Children will be able to program a drone to do something on Minecraft Xbox Live Edition with Education enabled. Contact the library to book a place.
  • Tuesday 18th Feb 10.00am -11.30am  York University Junior Science event- “Red Cabbage experiments” for aged 6-11
  • Wednesday 19th Photo Editing 1pm to 4pm Children will be able to learn how to photo edit using an online photo editor. They will learn how to use the editing software effectively. Contact the library to book a place.
  • Thursday 20th  Xbox & Board games 10am to 4pm Play on the Xbox or with boardgames in the Children’s Library. Fun family games for all ages.
  • Friday 21st Feb 10-2pm Crafting activities with the Children’s University
  • Saturday 22nd Feb  LEGO club 12-2pm
  • Saturday 22nd Feb Scribble Club 1-2pm (Art Club for all ages
  • Saturday 22nd Feb Coding and Computer  Club 12-2pm


  • Sat 15th Feb Harry Potter Book Night 2.30 – 4pm fully booked
  • Mon 17th Feb Harry Potter art workshop with Rebecca Carr 10am-12noon for ages 4-11
  • Tues 18th Feb Junk Craft Day for ages 4-11
  • Thurs 20th Feb Vinyl Painting Workshop with Catherine Campbell 10.30-11.30am for ages 4-11
  • Fri 21st Feb Sing-a-long with Kerry 10.30-11.00am for ages 0-7
  • All events are FREE for library members, £1 for non-members. Please contact the library to book a place.