A year after taking over running Misterton Library, Misterton Parish Council extended its opening hours to give an extra half-day opening. Now the new Community Partnership Library is looking for more volunteers to keep the service running. The Library is now run by Misterton Parish Council in a unique arrangement with Inspire, Notts County Council’s innovative new cultural organisation.
Lynn Whitehead was one of the first volunteers. She had moved to Misterton with her husband, Allan, in 2014 after working in administration for Mansfield District Council. She was delighted to find that Misterton had a good range of facilities — including a library. Then, when she heard that the library was looking for volunteers, she was among the first to apply in 2017. Lynn takes up the story: “I was encouraged by a neighbour to be a volunteer — and I love it! At first, I was apprehensive but there’s a good band of volunteers, and the Library has gone from strength to strength. I can recommend it.”
Training is provided; new recruits can ‘shadow’ more experienced volunteers; Inspire, the arms-length libraries provider, has a helpline; and the Parish Council has a named member, David Seymour, to oversee things and chair a members’ working group. So there is plenty of support.
Volunteers are needed for the Library’s opening hours, which are:
- Tuesday to Thursday, from 2.00pm to 5.00pm
- Saturday, from 9.30am to 12.30pm
Wednesday afternoon is a new session and has been of benefit, Lynn explains: “The Wednesday opening has made the Library accessible to more users. We are part of the BookStart scheme to get young children into the Library and used to books, and this year we will be involved in the Summer Reading Challenge again. We want to put on some themed weeks — and the Primary School will be bringing children into the Library. There are great plans for the future.”
Aside from handling books, Lynn points out another benefit: “Being a Library volunteer means that we meet and mix with people that we wouldn’t normally see. It’s a great way to meet people from the village.”
Anyone interested in volunteering to help support the Library should contact The Misterton Centre and Library on 01427 890646.