Thousands of books have been issued from Waipā libraries in the first three days of reopening as book lovers can finally satisfy their fix.
Around 3090 books have been issued by the Cambridge library and 2160 by the Te Awamutu library since both facilities reopened their doors on Monday 25 May.
Under alert level 2, community facilities such as libraries and museums were able to reopen with restrictions in place.
Waipā District Council acting community services manager, Brad Ward, said the response from the community since reopening had been 'fantastic'.
"People are clearly very happy to be able to go back into our libraries again and we are very pleased to welcome the community back. We've received lots of really positive feedback.
"Since reopening we've also seen a surge in inquiries about member registrations so that is really positive to see."
Brad said library users were not the only ones happy to have access to the facility again – staff were "over the moon" to be working together once more.
"The separation for staff during alert levels 4 and 3 has made the team closer than ever before. In fact, they are having so much fun back together that the staff are probably noisier than the customers."
E-resources continue to remain popular with more than 1200 eBooks and 240 eAudiobooks borrowed in the month of May – up nearly 350 per cent from the 290 eBooks and 50 eAudiobooks borrowed in May last year.
Meanwhile, almost 10,000 books have been returned to the Cambridge library and 5500 to the Te Awamutu library. There are still 11,500 items issued prior to lockdown which remain outstanding.
Return dates on all books have been extended and fees accrued during the lockdown period waived.
Brad said while it was great to see residents using the libraries again, safety restrictions were in place and needed to be adhered to.
"So far, people have been very happy to comply with the restrictions we have in place. Our library users understand our top priority is keeping our staff and customers safe."
A limit of 50 people are allowed in the Te Awamutu library and 30 in the Cambridge library at any one time and visits are limited to a maximum of 20 minutes.
Library users must keep at least a one metre distance between themselves and others at all times and it is imperative people refrain from coming to the library if feeling ill.
Both libraries are open from 9am-5pm on weekdays during alert level 2. To learn more about what's going on or to check the Waipā Library catalogue, head to www.waipalibraries.org.nz