DOZENS of Sussex libraries have reopened for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic forced their closure in March.

All 36 libraries run by West Sussex County Council are now open.

But limits on visitors are in place and all returned books will be quarantined for 72 hours before they are made available for others to borrow.

Reduced opening hours will be in place at all libraries for the foreseeable future.

The Argus:

Chichester Library. Photo: David Dixon

But the county council aims to gradually increase hours over time, said communities chief Councillor Duncan Crow.

“The steps put in place to open up browsing to limited numbers has taken a lot of thought and effort from the entire library service,” he said.

“We hope you will now take this opportunity to come and choose from the full range of library stock.”

Libraries will continue to run a “select and collect” service so readers can order books in advance to collect at the front door.

They will also offer one-hour computer sessions which must be booked in advance by phone or during a prior visit to your local library.

  • The coronavirus Sussex Crisis Fund has been set up to help those affected by the pandemic. The Argus’s charity and American Express have each donated £50,000 to kick-start the appeal. Grants will usually be for up to £5,000. More information is available at www.sussexgiving. To donate visit