Libraries

Libraries provide a variety of services for community members. Below summarises what library services are available in Greater Manchester.

Bolton

There are libraries across Bolton, with the main Central Library located in Bolton town centre alongside the art gallery and museum. All libraries across Bolton offer:

  • Access to books for adults, children and people of all abilities.
  • Computers and printing.
  • Scanning and photocopying.
  • Wi-Fi.
  • Online resources for children.

In addition to this, some libraries offer further services including:

  • Digital Support – including digital help, support using social media, online safety support, online health information, and support using digital devices.
  • Reading groups – a great way to meet other people and to share your love of books, reading and specific literature genres.
  • Special needs and accessibility services – including equipment and aid for people with sensory impairments, booklets and leaflets on disabilities, and free request services to obtain alternative material from anywhere in the country.
  • Health information – including books on prescriptions for people referred by their GP, and information on dementia services.
  • Business information resources – including the Business and Intellectual Property Centre, access to company information, access to financial data and statistics, information on starting a company, and access to market research. There is a charge for using this service.
  • Library events – such as groups for children, book groups, performances, author readings and talks.

Bury

Bury library offers access to:

  • Books, e-books, DVDs
  • Local archives
  • Access to computers

Manchester

All libraries in Manchester are “Libraries of Sanctuary” where everyone is welcome regardless of national origin. Anyone can become a member of Manchester libraries, even if you live outside of Manchester.

The libraries offer:

  • Free membership.
  • Free internet.
  • Free Wi-Fi.
  • Books and eBooks.
  • Books in different languages in some larger libraries. 
  • Tablet/chromebook lending schemes in some libraries.
  • Space for people to meet and feel welcomed.

The largest and most significant of libraries in Manchester is the Central Library on St. Peters Square, here you can also find:

Tameside

Libraries are situated across the borough of Tameside and offer residents access to:

  • Books, eBooks, audiobooks and magazines.
  • Computers, digital technology and free Wi-Fi.
  • Printing, scanning and copying services.
  • Online reference library
  • Local history.

Some libraries across Tameside also offer further services for residents to access including:

Trafford

There are a number of libraries spread across the borough of Trafford offering a range of services to residents. Libraries across Trafford offer members:

  • Access to books for adults, children and people of all abilities.
  • Computer, printing and scanning facilities.
  • Free Wi-Fi.

Some libraries in Trafford also offer

  • Community learning events.
  • Community room hire.
  • Trafford Local Studies – for information and material on local history dating back centuries.

For more information on library services and community learning events please visit the library website.

Oldham

There are more than 10 libraries spread across Oldham all offering an array of services including:

  • Access to books, eBooks, audiobooks, magazines and newspapers.
  • Access to computers.
  • Digital device lending services.
  • Local history.
  • Reading and writing groups.

Some libraries in Oldham also offer:

  • Resources for Businesses – the Business and Intellectual property Centre in Oldham library offers support and events for businesses and individuals wanting to start a business, including: support finding grants, business databases, market research & analysis, statistics, 3D printing, and business information and support.
  • Lifelong Learning Centre – offering courses to Oldham residents in areas such as health and social care, English & Maths, IT Skills, ESOL and vocational courses. There will be eligibility requirements to access these courses and their may be charges. Please speak to library staff to get details.
  • Wellbeing Centre – Chadderton library offers physical health services including a gym, swimming pool and classes.

Rochdale

Number One Riverside offers a range of library and council services in one place including:

  • Council customer services.
  • Free public Wi-Fi.
  • Room booking.
  • Access to computers.
  • Books and eBooks.
  • Special collections.

The library also offers further services and training for individuals including:

  • Books on prescription – including support for Mental Health, dementia, teenager/young peoples support, child mental health and individuals with long term conditions.
  • Events and training – such as computers for beginners classes, reading groups, mindfulness sessions, live well classes, knitting groups, coffee mornings and more. 

Salford

Salford Community Leisure manages libraries across Salford. Libraries across Salford offer a range of services for local communities. This includes:

You can find your local library here.

Salford Community Leisure Centres also offer support and services including:

  • Museums.
  • Gym memberships.
  • Water sports events.
  • Training services.
  • Community centres and events.

You can find out more about what’s on at Salford Community Leisure Centres here.

Stockport

Libraries across Stockport offer services and resources for residents including:

  • Books, eBooks and audiobooks.
  • Online resources – including driving theory tests, support for businesses, art and music, and life in the UK online courses.
  • Wi-Fi and access to computers.
  • Services for children – including reading challenges, interactive stories, free book packs for babies and toddlers, and online resources to help with homework.
  • Reading groups – groups of members of the community to come together to share their love of books, literature and genres.

Wigan

Wigan Life Centre in Wigan town centre, offers a range of public services under one roof, in a modern, friendly environment. This “One-Stop-Shop” can help you with services and issues such as:

  • Paying bills.
  • Planning advice and information.
  • Debt advice.
  • Council tax information.
  • Housing advice.
  • Help finding a job.
  • Adult learning courses.
  • Computers for council services and internet access.

Other services also located at the Life Centre in Wigan include

There are also local Life Centres in Leigh, Atherton, Ince, Marsh Green and Platt Bridge. For more information please visit Wigan Life Centre online.