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Order and Collect Service - questions and answers

What is Order and Collect?

Order and Collect is a new book-lending scheme that Powys Libraries have introduced. Current coronavirus restrictions mean we can't open our doors for browsing at the moment, so we're trying creative ways to get your library books to you! The service allows you to request books from the library, either by telephone or internet, and have them packed up to collect from designated libraries at an agreed time.

How do I arrange a collection?

You can arrange a collection by calling our library request line on 01597 827460. Alternatively, you can complete an online book request form here: Order and Collect Service.  Within a few days of submitting your request, you'll receive follow-up communication with details of a collection date.

We also have an email address, where you can direct general library enquiries:  

Is there a charge for this service? 

No, the service is free. We are also automatically renewing book loans before their return date, so there's no risk of having any fines or charges. We are currently not charging for loans of audiobooks.

What are your library request line opening hours?

Our request line is open during the following hours:

Monday - Friday
9am - 5pm

Can I collect from any library?

We're currently operating the service from 7 libraries: Brecon (y Gaer), Llandrindod Wells (Gwalia), Llanfyllin, Machynlleth, Newtown, Welshpool and Ystradgynlais. We are also working with volunteer networks and community groups across the county to facilitate collections from other locations, where possible.

How long can I borrow the books for?

The books will be issued to your library card for a standard 4-week period. However, automatic renewal of books means that you don't have to worry about being fined if you can't get the books back on time.

How many books can I have?

You can have up to 10 items per library card. If you're ordering as a family, that means you can have 10 books for each person in your household who has a library card.

Can I choose what books I want?

You'll be given the opportunity to request from fiction and nonfiction, and you'll also be able to specify what format you'd like the books in (e.g. Large Print, Audiobook). I'm afraid we won't be able to accept requests for specific titles at this time, although we do encourage you to tell us what types of books you're interested in. We can't guarantee that we can provide everything that you ask for, but our librarians will do their best!

Due to our quarantining requirements, librarians will not be able to respond to face-to-face requests when you are collecting your order.  You can only request books online or via our phone request line.

Can I borrow DVDs? 

DVD loans are not possible at this time.

Can I only return books I've read when I'm picking up new ones, or can I drop them off on a different day?

The 7 designated libraries will not be open to the public at set hours, so returns may not be possible without prior arrangement. The arrangement will vary at each location: some libraries have drop-boxes where you can return your books, but others do not. There may also be other community locations where books can be returned, but arrangements will need to be made locally. We suggest that you contact us via the library request line if you wish to return books outside of an allotted time.

Can I order online?

Yes, of course. Our online request form is available 24/7, and can be accessed here: Order and Collect Service

Do you deliver?

A delivery service is available for those shielding or self-isolating with symptoms, but only if they cannot arrange for someone else to collect on their behalf. In the event that you cannot collect, we will try to coordinate a delivery through our network of volunteers and community groups.  

Do I need to be a library member to participate in Order and Collect?

Yes, but it doesn't take long to sign up. You can do that online here: or by calling the library request line: 01597 827460.

Can I ask someone else to pick up my books?

Yes, we welcome collections from family members, friends or volunteers. If you ask someone else to collect your books, please ensure that they have details of your full name and library card number.

What happens when I collect my books?

Your selection of books will be packed up in a paper bag, and clearly marked with your name and library card number. The library doors will be open for you to come in and collect your bag at the allotted time, but you will not be able to go into the library to browse. Library staff will be on hand to direct you, from a safe distance.

I haven't heard from you since I submitted my request. How do I know that you've received it?

If you provide an email address as your preferred method of contact, you should receive an automated confirmation email as soon as you submit your request. If you haven't received one, please check that it hasn't accidentally ended up in your junk/spam email folder. You can change your email filter settings to prevent this happening in the future. If you have not given us an email address we'll contact you by phone when your books are ready for collection. You can always email us at or call us on 01597 827460 if you'd like us to check.

I've booked a collection slot but I can't make it - what do I do?

Please contact the library request line on: 01597 827460 or email us at:

What days are you currently open?

The 7 designated libraries will be open for collections only. Please do not visit these libraries outside of your collection slot time as we do not currently offer visiting hours. Our other libraries remain completely closed for the time being.

When will you be open for browsing? 

We do not yet know when Welsh Government will permit the reopening of our libraries for browsing.

Can I speak directly to someone who works at my branch library? 

Library staff are working a little differently at the moment, and some have been deployed to other council services to provide critical support during the coronavirus pandemic. Please contact us via the telephone request line, or by email, and library staff will respond to your query appropriately.

Is it safe? 

The library service is taking every precaution to ensure that the books you request are safe to handle. Staff have appropriate personal protective equipment, and are adhering to strict guidelines for handling the books. All books are quarantined for a minimum of 72 hours before the agreed collection date, and for the same amount of time on their return. We also recommend that you leave the books you've collected in their bag for a further 72 hours before handling them.  This is in accordance with guidance from Public Health Wales. Books are packed in brand new paper bags, which are disposed of for recycling as soon as you return your order to the library. Please try to make sure that you return the books in the same bag that they were originally packed in.  

Can I volunteer to help to take books to people who live near me?

Yes, that would be a great help, thank you. Please register at your local volunteer bureau or online with PAVO at

How can I give feedback on Order and Collect? 

We welcome all feedback relating to this new service. Please feel free to email us at, or telephone the library request line: 01597 827460.

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