Double the number of visitors have visited the new Library of Birmingham in its first 12 months, compared with the old Central Library, new statistics show.
It has welcomed 2.7 million people, many from around the world, in its first year. In addition the number of people joining the library has leapt significantly, with a 140 per cent increase recorded.
Roughly a quarter of a million people now list the library as the main library they use.
Brian Gambles , director of the Library of Birmingham said: “It has been an amazing first year. The hugely positive public reaction to the building, its facilities, our services and our events and exhibition programme, demonstrates the important role the Library plays in the social, cultural and economic life of the city.
“It is particularly pleasing to see the increase in library membership across the city, and the number of people benefitting from our free services to support learning, entrepreneurship and business growth. The Library of Birmingham is fulfilling its promise to transform the city, transform libraries and transform people’s lives.”
Ahead of first birthday celebrations on September 30, September, the Library of Birmingham has been celebrating:
* Contributing to a record number of visitors to the city this year,
* Guests on TripAdvisor rating the Library of Birmingham four and half stars,
* Earning a 2014 Certificate of Excellence for consistently receiving outstanding feedback from TripAdvisor travellers.
* Being named as one of the five Amazing Libraries You Must Visit by HuffPost Travel.
On average, members are booking 21,000 sessions on the Library of Birmingham’s public computers every month and nearly 5,000 people are logging onto the free wifi.
Members have also borrowed over 316,000 books, music, films and other items from the Library of Birmingham in the past year (up nearly 100 per cent from 2011/12) and renewed borrowed items nearly 54,000 times.
In addition, in July, the Library of Birmingham launched its Business and Intellectual roperty Centre, in partnership with the British Library, one of only six in the UK.
Latest figures indicate a 64 per cent increase in people receiving one-to-one specialist business advice at the Library and nearly 600 people used the Library’s unique business resources to help them start or grow their own business over the three months.
Demand for the Library’s support with CV writing and job search is strong, with over 1,500 people taking advantage of the free help available, including work clubs, in the same period.
The events and exhibitions programme at the Library of Birmingham has also proved very popular.