The historic Grade II listed Darlington Library reopened in September 2023 after a total of £3.7m was invested in an extensive redevelopment to restore its historical features, while updating and modernising its facilities.
The renovation was helped by funding from Arts Council England, which awarded £225,000 for the refurbishment of three key areas – the Reminiscence Room, the Hoskins Room and The Hive – and funded improvements to the library’s digital offer. A further £30,000 was also secured through the LibraryOn grants programme to support improvements to digital discoverability, including updates to the library website.
The result is a sympathetic restoration of key heritage features while at the same time upgrading and modernising the facilities to 21st century standards.
The beautiful space benefits from light flooding in through glass laylights in the roof, and dedicated areas offer somewhere for visitors to work alone, meet and collaborate, or use resources such as The Centre for Local Studies. In addition, the Crown Street Art Gallery displays works from the Borough Collection and local artists, and the fabulous children’s library has an enchanted woodland theme to capture the imagination of both children and adults alike.
iCAM Wireless Cloud Print and iKiosk
Darlington Libraries had been using iCAM Workstation Control and Printer Control at both their sites for 15 years and decided, as part of the refurbishment project at Darlington Library, to introduce Wireless Cloud Print at both Darlington Library and Cockerton Library.
This allows library users to print documents from their own devices and further improves the digital offering in the library, alongside the rest of the digital improvements, further expanding the overall library offer.
In addition, the installation of iCAM iKiosk on the Bibliotheca kiosk in Darlington Library means library members can log in to the self-service kiosk to pay for their printing. This extension of the self-service offering means less queueing at a desk for library members and frees up staff to deal with more complex enquiries.
Neil Johnson, Director, Insight Media:
“We were thrilled to be a part of this exciting project, in such a stunning building. The finished result is just beautiful and we are honoured to have been a part of the team bringing together this improved library offer for the people of Darlington.”