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LoveReading Library of the Month #11: Horley Library

Liz Robinson

By Liz Robinson on 22nd July 2019

Horley Library holds some very fond memories for me. As a child, it was my local magical realm and I can remember lying on the floor in the Children’s Section happily ensconced in my latest favourite book. The library has recently moved location, not too far though, just up the road. The move must have been a lot of work, it seems as though it was worth it, particularly with the new members. The photos are lovely, it looks so welcoming and friendly. It is calling for me to revisit, I am quite sure I would be just as happy, curled up in the corner with a fabulous book.

Tell us about your library and the area it sits in.

Horley Library recently moved to a new building after over 60 years in its previous location. The new library opened on 30th April 2019 and in the first 3 weeks of being open, we signed up over 410 new members.

Horley is a bustling commuter town, in the borough of Reigate and Banstead in Surrey, close to London Gatwick Airport.

Describe your library in three words.

Colourful Friendly Interactive

Apart from plenty of reading material, what other services does your library offer?


Free wi-fi



Items for sale

Meeting rooms for hire 

Help with applying for free bus passes for seniors and disabled people

Local History Centre (meet twice a week)

Children’s weekly activities i.e. Crafty Storytime (Wednesdays at 10.30-11.15am) and Rhyme Time (Thursdays at 10.30-11am)

Children’s school holiday activities

Information on everything that’s available including our events.

What is the strangest book-related question your team has been asked?

Do you have that cookbook by the handsome man with the designer stubble?

If you were to become a character from a book for the day, who would it be and why?

Robinson Crusoe because I’d be on my own tropical island, enjoying the outdoors and the sunshine, building things and all in the knowledge that I was going to be rescued at some point!


What’s been the biggest surprise about working in a library?

That there is so much more to do than shelving books – I learn something new almost every single day.

What are your top three must-reads?

To Kill a Mocking Bird by Harper Lee

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini

Winnie the Pooh by AA Milne

What is your favourite book from your childhood, and why did you love it?

Stig of the Dump by Clive King. I liked it because I was a tomboy and liked being outside – looking back, I think I also liked the fact that the main character, Barney seems to be a bit of a loner which I could identify with that as I was also prone to wandering off on my own to play in the fields opposite my house!

Why are libraries such a vital link in our communities?

Libraries are about so much more than books – they are a place where children can learn, play, interact and bond with their parents and guardians, where parents can meet other parents and form friendships that may last a lifetime, they are a safe-haven for the elderly or homeless where the staff are friendly and inclusive of all. They are place where information is available about what’s going on in the local community, where customers can apply for their bus pass ensuring travel and opportunity are still possible for those without a car or no longer able to drive. The computers offer the opportunity to apply for jobs, school places, research family trees, play solitaire and so much more – often for people who would never leave the house. They are an essential hub for every age group.

Follow Horley Libary on social media: 

Twitter: @HorleyLibrary


55-57 Russell Square, Victoria Road, Horley, Surrey RH6 7QH

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