Staycation in style with Warwickshire Libraries

We’re having a break from our monthly Twitter #HealthChat until October but have invited our Warwickshire colleague Emily to write a post about all what’s available at your local public library. We are amazed at all the activities they provide both in their libraries and online. No shortage of ideas below to help keep children occupied and for adults to try something new – and on our doorstep too 8-). Over to Emily:

Spend your summer with Warwickshire

The summer is finally here (though weatherwise, we never know if that’s true or not!). Whatever the weather this August, you’ll find lots to keep you and the family entertained throughout the holidays at Warwickshire Libraries. Our libraries are increasing the services and offers available in our buildings and we continue with our programme of virtual events and activities too (find out the latest information here).

The Summer Reading Challenge 

This year, we’re very excited that the Summer Reading Challenge is back in our libraries. Last year, the Challenge went virtual and, although this year, there are still lots of activities available online (more about that later), families are welcome to visit their local Warwickshire Library to find out more about this year’s Challenge and for children aged 4 to 11, they can sign up and receive their Summer Reading Challenge pack.

Explore our Summer Reading Challenge page here.

But what is the Summer Reading Challenge I hear you ask and who is it for? (may have just given that one away in the previous paragraph – oops!). The Summer Reading Challenge, presented by The Reading Agency, is delivered in partnership with public libraries and funded by Arts Council England. The Challenge encourages children aged 4 to 11 to enjoy the benefits of reading for pleasure over the summer holidays.

This year’s Summer Reading Challenge theme is Wild World Heroes, created in partnership with WWF and illustrated by award-winning children’s author and illustrator Heath McKenzie.

Wild World Heroes will inspire children to explore ways of helping to save the planet, with a focus on taking action for nature and tackling real-world environmental issues, from plastic pollution and deforestation to wildlife decline and nature loss.


The Summer Reading Challenge at a glance:

  • Visit your local Library to join and get started!
  • Set your reading goal and borrow and read our exciting library books (your choice of book is up to you, though we’re always happen to help you find titles to enjoy).
  • You can choose to read books from our libraries, borrow eBooks from BorrowBox or listen to eAudio titles.
  • Fill in review sheets and drop them back at your library whenever you are visiting.
  • When you complete the challenge, pop back to your library to collect your certificate and medal.
  • The Summer Reading Challenge is open to children aged 4-11-years. Materials are provided free of charge, whilst stocks last.
  • You can also find lots of activities and reading ideas on the Summer Reading Challenge website, including their Book Sorter and ideas for creative activities.

But there’s more……

We’re also hosting virtual events over the summer holidays. We will be joined by fabulous authors and illustrators who will be sharing their writing tips and talking about their inspirations.

These events are free and full details can be found on our Eventbrite events page.

You can also find lots of creative craft videos from staff in our libraries on our Facebook page. You can make a bug hotel, create a friendship flower and brighten up your favourite book with a specially designed bookmark.

We’re adding events and posts all the time so do keep an eye on the page to find out what’s happening both virtually and in your local Warwickshire Library.

What else can families do in Warwickshire this summer?

Of course, Warwickshire Libraries aren’t the only place families can look for ideas for activities this summer. Our colleagues at Adult and Community Learning have created four Let’s Go Outside packs to celebrate getting outdoors as a family. Each pack is full of fun learning opportunities with activities ranging from paper boat races, to taking musical walks, to stargazing strolls – and so much more!

There’s a pack covering North Warwickshire (including Nuneaton and Bedworth), one for East Warwickshire (Rugby and the surrounding areas), for Warwick District and surrounding areas and for Stratford District and surrounding areas.

You can find all the packs on this page (scroll down to find them).

Warwickshire’s Family Information Service also have a Summer Holiday Directory of activities that families can get involved with throughout the holidays. Again, information is arranged by area and you can also find links to virtual events happening too.

There’s also information about the Holiday Activities and Food Programme (HAF).

Families can also explore the many museums and attractions we have here in Warwickshire. You can find out about Warwickshire Heritage and Culture activities taking place throughout the summer here.

Museums to explore include Market Hall in Warwick, Nuneaton Museum and Art Gallery, Rugby Museum and Art Gallery and Leamington Museum and Art Gallery. We couldn’t not mention Shakespeare’s Stratford and don’t forget that many of these places can also be explored online, including the newly launched Exploring Eliot website, looking at the life and history of author George Eliot.

Of course, depending on the weather, you may prefer to get out and about in the fresh air. If that appeals, why not explore the wonderful outside spaces available in the county? Warwickshire’s Country Parks homepage is a great place to start to find out everything you need to know about visiting these outdoor spaces.

So is it all just for children and families?

Not at all.

You can find lots of reading ideas on our library shelves and in our BorrowBox collection for all ages. Whether you’re a thriller fan or horror reader, romance lover or non-fiction nut, there are titles available for you. And, if you’re not sure what to read, we can suggest something too.


Our eBook and eAudio collections via BorrowBox can be browsed 24/7. If you’re new to using BorrowBox, you can watch our short ‘BorrowBox Basics’ video here or expand your browsing with our ‘Tips and Tricks’ video.

You’ll also find our ‘Read/Listen Now, No Waiting’ titles available, meaning there’s always something for you to read/listen to. These titles change periodically so if one catches your eye, be sure to download it sooner rather than later.

Our eMagazine collection via the Libby app is also available to use for free for Warwickshire Library members. You can find the latest editions of all your favourite magazines, from Empire to BBC Gardeners World, AutoCar to Family History. You can also keep up to date with the latest news using PressReader to browse through our collection of eNewspapers.

We have a monthly Virtual Reading Group and author events throughout the year (keep an eye on that all important Eventbrite page or sign up for our regular newsletter so you’re always up to date with the latest library news).

Have a great summer!