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Bristol Libraries to receive Arts Council funding to pedal library services to Bristol

Bristol Libraries to receive Arts Council funding to pedal library services to Bristol

Pedal power will soon be helping Bristol Libraries to take books, storytelling and more out into the community thanks to three new specially commissioned Cargo Bikes.

23 August 2021

The Words on Wheels project will enable the library team to go out and about into communities, targeting people who don’t currently use libraries and showing people what’s on offer.

Their versatile design means the library service can tailor the contents of the bikes to suit the type of event they attend such as big books, blankets and cushions for a cosy story-time in a park, or internet enabled tablets and books on writing CVs for a pop up job fair on the high street.

Deputy Mayor, councillor Asher Craig, who has responsibility for Bristol’s libraries, said: “No longer are Bristol Libraries bound by their buildings, waiting for you to visit; the library can now come to you.

“Using cargo bikes will allow us to take our services on the road in a clean and sustainable way, that will not have a negative impact on the city.

“We are very grateful for this opportunity to expand our outreach programme and we are very excited to be setting off on a new, bold venture with Words on Wheels, pedalling services to the people of Bristol. Keep an eye out for one of our bikes coming to an event near you!”

The first part of the Words on Wheels project will involve groups working with local artists, including Upfest, to design the graphics for the bikes, which will help catch the eye and promote reading and library services wherever they go about the city.

Once ready for the road the bikes, acting as mini, mobile, pop up libraries, will start touring and attending major events such as Harbourfest, Redfest and Picnic in the Park, supported by professional storytellers, circus performers and writers. 

The Words of Wheels project has been funded thanks to an Arts Council England National Lottery Project Grant.

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