Kerry mobile library service to visit just once a month after van fails NCT

Kerry’s rural readers will be reduced to getting books once a month — after one of the county’s mobile library vans failed its NCT.

The two book-laden vans visit 93 locations every fortnight from Ventry in the west to Lauragh in the south and Duagh in the north.

However, a notice said that the service in south and mid-Kerry was being reduced “due to mechanical failure” of one of the vans.

This has since been clarified as NCT trouble — the older van, believed to be 17 years old — failed its NCT test so spectacularly it would cost too much to repair so a new one has been ordered.

Kerry is a reading county and in 2016, almost 645,400 items were borrowed from its nine libraries, including the mobile service.

The mobile service will now reduce to a monthly round trip until a new van hits the road.

The council has a €250,000 grant to replace the mobile library which, after a tender process, is now under construction by Cahill’s Coach Builders, Graiguenamanagh, Co Kilkenny. It has a delivery date of April 2018.

“It is uneconomic to spend further public funds to repair the present mobile so we intend to revise our mobile library schedule from now until delivery of the new mobile unit. The remaining vehicle will provide a mobile library service throughout the county by merging the schedule of stops and thus provide a monthly service across the county.

“No area of the county and none of our 93 mobile library locations will be left without a service,” the spokeswoman added.

The spokesperson said additional books may be issued to borrowers if required.

She said mobile library borrowers will be notified of impending visits by SMS text and the situation will be further communicated in person to regular borrowers on their next visit to the mobile library. It currently plans to provide a service to North and West Kerry for two weeks and then south and East Kerry for two weeks, operational from Monday next.

People can request and renew books in person or online via the library website

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