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Digital Future for Libraries Service following £289,000 grant

Published Thursday, 18 March 2021

Coventry Libraries Service has been given an amazing opportunity to expand its digital offer.

The service. working in partnership with digital support agency, The Space, has successfully bid for an Arts Council grant of £289,000 to develop a Digital Culture Programme.

It will see Coventry Libraries Service and The Space working with BBC Archives and Radio 3, The British Film Institute and Media Archive for Central England by forming a new Creative Digital Space within the Central Library, focusing on virtual reality and audio experiences through established media collections and digital archives.   

Content will be audience-friendly, popular, high-quality and seek to encourage further learning.  Audio experiences will be curated within a library listening haven, designed to promote well-being and relaxation, where library users can come to make space for slow and reflective time, to de-stress and be introduced to a wealth of sound experiences.

The programme will also see work taking place away from Central Library at Bell Green, Foleshill and Tile Hill Libraries. In addition to offering the opportunity to enjoy virtual reality and audio experiences, artists will work with local communities to create their own digital content and shape cultural provision.  Work will focus on digital creative media by exploring the use of digital media archives and material drawn directly from Coventry’s communities.

Cllr Kevin Maton, Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, said: “This is an incredible opportunity to develop the city’s digital culture. I want to thank The Arts Council for their funding and also those who have worked so hard to attract it.

“This is exactly the kind of exciting content a modern library service should be offering, using the latest technology to allow us to enjoy content in new and challenging ways. As Covid restrictions gradually begin to be removed, this promises exciting times ahead and something we can all look forward to.”

The live events part of the cultural programme will begin in autumn 2021 and continue until April 2022.  

The cultural programme will offer audiences the chance to not only experience high-quality work by a range of artists, designers, musicians and film makers, but also to contribute their own stories.  

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