People are being encouraged to explore their libraries and all they have to offer during the first national Libraries Week.

With 39 libraries across County Durham, residents are being reminded that the facilities offer not only thousands of books to enjoy but are also home to plenty of other activities.

Many libraries now run regular groups that as well as inspiring people to read, also help them learn digital skills and tap into their creative side.

Reading groups for adults can help shake up anyone in a reading rut, while the ‘Get Creative’ groups allow people to learn a new craft, finish a project they’ve been working on and even pass on their skills to others.

Young people can also enjoy a range of activities, including ‘Toddler Time’, a session for under-fives to help develop their creativity and literacy skills.

School holiday events such as arts and crafts sessions can also keep older children entertained, whatever the weather.

Linda Dobson, principal library manager, said: “Libraries have so much to offer adults and children of all ages and many people don’t realise there is so much going on.

“This year, Libraries Week also coincides with Durham Book Festival and we hope both events inspire people across our county to visit their local libraries and explore what they can see and do.”

As part of the festival, libraries across County Durham have also been hosting Do Not Enter the Monster Zoo, a new theatre production based on the book written by Amy Sparkes and illustrated by Sara Ogilvie.

Libraries Week runs until Saturday, 14 October.

To find out more about libraries in County Durham and find a library near you visit www.durham.gov.uk/libraries and for more information on Durham Book Festival visit www.durhambookfestival.com

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