Shetland Library Coronavirus updates

The Library and Learning Centre are now open again - check current opening hours here.

  • Face coverings are mandatory in public libraries – please wear one unless you are under 5 or exempt.
  • Do not enter the library if you, or anyone in your household has coronavirus symptoms, or if you are isolating because of NHS contact tracing.
  • Please keep 2m distance and employ good hand/cough hygiene.
  • Please use the sanitiser stations at the door and around the library.

We collect brief customer details for the Scottish Government's Test and Protect scheme (see below for details).  However, if you are just collecting pre-ordered books, you do so at the desk by the front door and do not need to provide Test and Protect details.

Please return your books in the 24-hour point outside or place in the marked crates outside.  We 'quarantine' returned books for 3 days for extra safety.

There  is a second customer service desk you can use, to reduce queuing at the main desk.
All computers are now in the Learning Centre - see below for information on using computers.
Please continue to take advantage of all non-contact services listed below, and we will update you as plans progress.  We hope to increase opening hours soon.

Test and Protect:

To ensure the health and safety of everyone using the library, we will ensure physical distancing measures take place.  To minimise the chance of exposure to COVID-19, anyone who has symptoms or is self isolating should not attend. 
Face coverings are mandatory in public libraries.
In addition, to assist with contact tracing where a potential outbreak of COVID-19 is linked to specific premises, the library is required to collect minimal contact details from customers.  This includes name and contact details.  Where people are attending as part of a household, details can be recorded for a single 'lead member' of the household rather than every member.  If a visit is simply to collect pre-ordered books this information is not required.  The information will support NHS Scotland's Test and Protect service and form part of the effort to suppress COVID-19.

The full Scottish Government guidance on Test and Protect can be accessed at the following link: Scottish Government guidance on Test and Protect

The Council's Privacy Statement relating to Track and Trace information can be found on the Council's website COVID-19 Track and Trace - SIC Premises (general).

Connect and Collect:

Phone or email us to request a selection of items be made ready for you to pick up from Lerwick Library. Let us know your preferences e.g. format, genre, and age if for children. We may not be able to get particular titles for you at this time but can make you up a good selection of up to 20 books.
Staff will let you know when your order is ready to be picked up.

Home deliveries:

We are delivering bags of books to so customers on a monthly rota covering the Mainland, Unst, Yell, Whalsay and Bressay. We particularly want to make sure we are getting books to customers who have no Internet, are visually impaired or isolating because of NHS contact tracing.

Bookbug and events:

Sorry, all physical events are currently suspended, but keep an eye on our website or social media for online Bookbug sessions and other events.

Using computers:

All computers are in the Learning Centre and opening hours are the same as the library.  Bookings are required, and access is limited to one hour per day.  Keyboards and mice are replaced between users, and all other surfaces spot cleaned.  Public computers shut down automatically 15 minutes before closing time.

We can lend tablet computers.
We can also do printing for collection if you email us.
If you have your own device you can use our free wifi in the Lerwick library grounds, but please always follow distancing rules.


Reservations can be placed as normal on our online system and you can have up to 20 items on request at any one time.  If you want to request or suggest items not in stock, please just ask at the desk, email or phone.  Please note there may be delays getting new stock due to supplier issues.


We have FREE eBooks, eComics, eMagazines, eAudiobooks and eNewspapers, you can borrow from home via the RB Digital app and our new BorrowBox app. We also have online reference sites to browse - 24 Hour Library.

Joining the Library:

You can join while visiting the library or online here - how to join

School libraries:

School libraries are open again with distancing, hand/cough hygiene and book quarantining in place.

Mobile libraries:

Suspended for the meantime, but we are doing non-contact deliveries to those customers, and hope to be able to use the mobile library again soon to extend our rural services.

Social media:

We are putting a lot of news and new video content on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Please follow us to keep up with what's happening.

We will post more updates here as soon as we can.