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Libraries update:

Like many other council services, Essex County Council has begun a phased approach to re-open libraries in line with government guidelines. Initially, sixteen sites are open from Monday 6 July 2020.

Find out more in our news story. Frequently asked questions.

10 library things to do for young adults

red, orange and yellow background with the words 10 library things to do and a row of library icons
04 January 2018

Libraries are a great place for young adults to visit. They are a safe space to study and socialise and improve imagination and literacy. Here are 10 things young adults can do with libraries.


1 - Join the library

Joining the library is free and easy and can be done online or in person at any library in Essex. Young adult memberships are available for 12 to 16 year olds and replacing cards can be done in any Essex library. Find your local library now.


2 - Try a recommended read

If your teenager is stuck with what to read next, then tempt them with something new. Discover great reading ideas in our regularly updated booklists.


3 - Reserve a book

If your teenager knows of a book or subject they want to read or an author they want to try they can use the library catalogue to reserve books from home. These can then be sent to any Essex library and we’ll let you know when they are available to collect.


4 - Get homework and study support

We offer a comfortable environment for your teenager to study in and loads of reliable resources to help with their homework. If your teen can’t get to the library we also have many online resources they can access from home.


5 - Volunteer with us!

Volunteering is a great way for teens to gain new skills and is often a requirement for programmes such as the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. We have volunteering opportunities for young people aged 14 and over, including Library Ambassadors and the Summer Reading Challenge. It also looks great on their CVs!


6 - Get some 'Shelf Help'

One in ten teenagers experience a mental health issue during their adolescence. Reading Well for young people helps those aged 13 to 18 manage their mental health and wellbeing using resources recommended by other young people. If your teenager is experiencing bullying, self-esteem issues or stress, our range of books can help.


7 - Read a magazine online

Is your teenager spending too much money on magazines? Did you know they can download them free of charge with their Essex library card instead? We subscribe to over 100 magazines on a wide range of topics. From celebrity gossip and fashion to cars and computers, get your teenager to look online today!


8 - Use a library computer or our free WiFi

Library computers are free to use, all your teenager needs is their library card. Printing services are also available. If they have their own device they can also use the library’s free WiFi.


9 - Borrow an e-book or e-audio

Libraries have a huge amount of books, but we also have an ever growing selection of e-books and e-audio. These are free to borrow 24/7 on your internet enabled device.


10 – Borrow a comic or graphic novel online

Is your teen a reluctant reader? Or are they looking for something different? Why not check out our collection of e-comics and e-graphic novels, including Star Wars, Marvel and Manga titles. Download free of charge and enjoy wherever you are.



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Check out our 10 library things for adults.