Scottish libraries trial ‘One Card’ access

New trial scheme will remove barriers between services.

Libraries in Scotland are trialling a new scheme which will allow library users to access any library service using just one membership card.

Five local councils are taking part in the pilot, which will run for six months and will then be evaluated by the Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) with a view to rolling out the service across the whole of Scotland.

During the pilot, card holders in Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Angus, Highland, and Perth and Kinross will have access to more than 120 libraries, 1.6 million books and 600 PCs.

Pamela Tulloch, chief executive of the SLIC said: “One of the fundamental defining characteristics of public libraries is that they are open to everyone.  No-one is turned away from a library, there is no joining fee, and anyone can use a library and its services, regardless of age and background. The One Card pilot will further improve access by removing barriers between services, and will hopefully encouraging more people to take advantage of our public library service.”

If successful, the pilot will pave the way for a national library card, according to Fiona Hyslop Scotland’s Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs. “As well as traditional services like book lending, libraries are also places where people can access free wifi, use a computer and socialise. Libraries can empower communities, helping tackle inequality, reduce isolation and boost the local economy,” she said.