In a direct response to the latest Government guidance on COVID-19, Bristol City Council will temporarily close its museums from tomorrow and all city libraries from Thursday (19 March 2020). The closures for both services is temporary and initially until 1 May 2020.
From tomorrow, Bristol Museum & Art Gallery and M Shed will be closed. Blaise Museum, Red Lodge and Georgian House are all currently closed due to seasonal operating hours. They were due to open on 1 April until end of December, but will now remain temporarily closed. Bristol Archives will also be closed, but virtual services will be maintained. Full details can be found at https://www.bristolmuseums.org.uk/.
As of Thursday, Bristol Libraries will close and provide only online services. Fines will be waived so library customers do not need to worry about overdue items or renewals. Please ignore any reminders which might be issued. Hartcliffe Library @Symes and Lockleaze Library in Cameron Centre are already closed. Extended access libraries in Stockwood, Westbury and St George are also closed.
Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol, said:
“We must act in the interests of public safety first and foremost, which is why we are introducing these temporary closures in response to the latest Government guidance. We recognise the importance and value of these public services to communities, but they are also social spaces with a high level of interaction.
“Please don’t forget the online services we have available for both museums, the archives and our libraries. There are lots of e books and audio available 24/7 and we are investing in immediate improvements to http://www.librarieswest.org.uk from tomorrow to enhance our online services.”
Libraries will not be open to accept returned books – please do not leave them on the doorstep as they could be stolen or damaged with no one there to collect them.
The Bristol City Council website now has a hub page with all the latest up to date information. It can be viewed here.