As part of his challenge to join every library authority in the UK, poet and author Joseph Coelho has visited Oldham Library to sign up and receive his library card.
The visit is part of a UK challenge to sign up to around 3,600 libraries across the UK to celebrate the vital role libraries play in our lives.
As part of the visit, the popular poet is encouraging as many people as possible across Oldham to #JoinYourLibrary and celebrate what the they have to offer.
Joseph (pictured centre) has been plotting his progress on a giant library marathon map, you can watch his progress at www.thepoetryofjosephcoelho.com.
The poet has long been a passionate and vociferous supporter of libraries in the UK.
His debut picture book, Luna Loves Library Day, celebrates his love for libraries and his own childhood spent in libraries:
Joseph said: “It was in my local library where I studied for exams with friends, browsed books about beach combing and imagined living by the sea, bought second-hand encyclopedias that I’d otherwise never own and where I had my first Saturday job.
“It was in my library that I got to know and connect with my local community, where I read, studied and wrote.”
Rebekah Sutcliffe, Strategic Director of Communities and Reform, said: “What Joseph is doing to celebrate and promote the libraries offer is just brilliant.
“Our libraries in Oldham offer so much for residents and visitors, providing an interactive hub of activity for all ages.
“We encourage everyone in Oldham to consider their local library as a place to access a range of resources including family activities, books, e-books, computers and health, wellbeing, financial and housing advice.
“Libraries are not just a place for books, but also a place for positive social interaction.
“They also offer the invaluable resource of free internet access to reach and maintain contact with family, friends and support services, help with getting online and resources in community languages. We wish Joseph good luck with his challenge.”
Oldham recently celebrated more than 1,000,000 people coming through the doors of Oldham Libraries between 2018 and 2019.
To sign up your local library, visit www.oldham.gov.uk/libraries.