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Harris museum announces plans to begin phased re-opening this weekend

Posted on - 8th July, 2020 - 12:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Arts, Flag Market, Preston City Centre, Preston News, What's On in Preston
The Harris exterior
The Harris is getting ready to re-open its doors

The Harris will welcome visitors back through its doors from this Saturday (July 11) as part of a phased reopening.

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The ground floor will open first, with the main library offering a book lending and returns service. The shop will also open for purchases and there will be a takeaway café service, both accepting contactless card payments.

Read more: Harris museum releases updated design plans to reassure concerned Prestonians

The Harris team, who will be social distancing, will guide and direct visitors safely through the ground floor area using a one way system.

There will be information and assistance available, and visitors can be reassured that all government guidelines and safety measures will be strictly adhered to.

In this first phase there will be reduced opening hours from 10.30am – 3.30pm with the building closed on Sundays (including Sunday 12 July).

The public computers will continue to be unavailable for the time being.

Harris visitor staff
Staff at the Harris are ready to welcome back visitors

Councillor Peter Kelly, Preston City Council Cabinet member for culture and leisure, said: “We are excited to be welcoming back visitors to the Harris and have been working hard to ensure this is managed safely.

“The Harris is a multi-functional space, and as the main library in Lancashire, will be the first to open. Smaller local branch libraries will follow as soon as they are confirmed as safe to do so.

“Following this first phased opening of the Harris we will look to open other floors of the building including the museum and art gallery spaces in the coming weeks.”

Read more: How Proud Preston People have been surviving lockdown

Councillor Peter Buckley, Lancashire County Council Cabinet member for community and cultural services, said: “All our other branch libraries across Lancashire will be reopened as soon as they are confirmed it is safe to do so.

“We will provide more information about which libraries and when over the coming weeks.”

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There is no need to book before visiting and the Harris building is free to enter. However, to maintain social distancing, there may be times visitors will have to queue and so are being asked to limit their visits to 15 minutes.

Visitors will not be required to wear a face covering to enter the building, however it would assist in the protection of staff and other visitors.

During this first phase the toilets will not reopen.

A full list of FAQs is available on the Harris website to answer any questions before visiting.

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Are you looking forward to returning to the Harris? Tell us in the comments below.

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