Libraries, insurance and a little relaxation

There have been fewer aftershocks today, and in between bouts of blogging I’ve had to make a claim with the Earthquake Commission. They were great to deal with, and their website has plenty of useful information.

If you are an insured homeowner that has suffered damage, don’t hesitate to make a claim. Have your insurance policy number handy.

And don’t be afraid to give yourself a break from the news – Central library will be open tomorrow 9am – 5pm and normal weekend hours 10am-4pm. Come along and refresh your bookshelves,  use our free internet or Wifi, computers and software or just hang out and relax for a bit. Don’t want to leave home? Try our audiobook collection.

Earthquake Fascination

Earthquakes are scary but they can be fascinating. If you want to know more about our earthquake and others in the past we’ve just updated our Earthquakes page.

There are links to practical help if you need it and to how you can help by supporting the Red Cross Appeal.

On the information side I think this dynamic Christchurch quake map is fascinating. And of course there is Geonet for regular monitoring of “was that a shake or just a truck going by”!

Curious about what the library looked like after the earthquake?

After seeing the disturbing photos of the University of Canterbury Library, we all wondered how the Christchurch City Libraries held up.

For us curious types, here’s some photos of the Central Library after the earthquake, before our intrepid staff started on the big cleanup.

Central Library : after the quake

The Central Library will re-open tomorrow, Friday 10 September from 9am to 5pm, and resume normal weekend hours for Saturday and Sunday (10am to 4pm).
Akaroa Library is open today, and we will let you know more about other branches as they are checked and inspected.

Help for lost pets

The Christchurch earthquake has just made us all aware of how important it is to be prepared for a disaster. While an earthquake is terrifying for us, it is equally so for our pets. They get scared too.

Hundreds of terrified animals have been affected by the earthquake. If your pet has gone missing, visit to find what you can do.

Keep younger kids entertained with TumbleBooks

While we adults still don’t know how many books will have tumbled to the floor when public libraries are cleared for opening, one thing you can be sure of is that TumbleBook Library is a bit of a winner with younger children.

One of the library’s many premium websites, the Tumblebook Library has picture and story books that are narrated and have some animation. There’s also puzzles, word games and chapter books. There’s also non-fiction books about insects, dolphins and to teach languages. My favourite is narrated by John Lithgow, I’m a manatee.

So if you need some short stories to help entertain younger family members, try TumbleBook Library.

Find out how to get a PIN on the library website.

Update: Thursday 9 September

Central Library on Gloucester Street and Akaroa Library are open to the public. Central Library is open today from 9 am to 5 pm and for normal opening hours over the weekend (10am-4pm Saturday  and Sunday). Other libraries remain closed until further notice while they are being assessed for structural damage. These libraries will be opened as soon as possible

Don’t worry about your books being due – all borrowed items with return dates between the 1 and 13 September have now had their return date extended to the 30 September. So don’t be in a hurry to bring library books and other items back,  hang on to them until our libraries are up and running. You will not get fines.

See our news alerts page for the latest information.

Our main website, including the library catalogue and premium websites are available.

You can also view some great material on:

For more earthquake information and assistance: