THIS is the time to explore Explore York online, providing the Libraries from Home service during the Coronavirus lockdown.
“If you are confused or overwhelmed by the huge amount of information on offer, Explore can help,” says executive assistant Gillian Holmes, encouraging visits to the website, exploreyork.org.uk, “where it is simple to find what you need”.
This encouragement comes after all Explore York library buildings, reading cafes and the City Archives were closed to the public from 12 noon on March 21, in response to Government strictures.
“We are making it easy for people to find information and advice, as well as inspiration, as we all deal with the Coronavirus crisis.”
The Explore website has assorted useful links to help people cope during the coming weeks. “Some sites have always been part of our online offer and some are brand new,” says Gillian.
“We are also working with City of York Council and our many partners in York, so that our communities can join together and we continue to support their initiatives, just as we will when our buildings open again.
“Organisations across the country are developing their online services in this challenging time. We are using our expertise to gather together the best offers and add them to the lists of sites we recommend.”
Explore York will be developing online activities of its own, such as a Virtual Book Group. “We will be updating the website regularly as these new things come on stream and sharing on social media using #LibrariesFromHome,” says Gillian.
What’s available online from Explore York:
Updates on how Explore is responding during the pandemic and updates about what’s new at https://www.exploreyork.org.uk/coronavirus/
Information and support during the Coronavirus crisis from official sources at exploreyork.org.uk/recommended-websites/coronavirus-resources/
5000 Ebooks and audio books for adults and children free to borrow from the online library at exploreyork.org.uk/digital/e-books/
The chance to visit the new York Images site to explore the history of the city through photographs, illustrations, maps and archival documents at exploreyork.org.uk/digital/york-images/
The opportunity to start your family tree using Ancestry and Find My Past. The library editions are both free to use from home at exploreyork.org.uk/digital/online-reference/
Reliable information about everything can be found on the Online Reference pages at exploreyork.org.uk/digital/online-reference/
“Everything is free to access,” says Gillian. “All you need is a library card. You can get a card online and start using it immediately at exploreyork.org.uk/getting-a-library-card-or-yorkcard/.”