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Hive Shortlisted for Library of the Year Award

The Hive, Europe’s first fully integrated university and public library, is in the running to win Library of the Year at the 2014 Bookseller Awards.

The award aims to find Britain’s best library for innovations in book lending, visits, public experiences and all-round service.

Since the official opening in July 2012 by HM The Queen, The Hive – a joint project between the University of Worcester and Worcestershire County Council – has had over 1.5 million visits – an increase of over 147 per cent from the former public library. Book issues have risen by 203 per cent and the number of new members joining the library has risen by 340 per cent, not including students registering from the University.

The £60m landmark building brings together Worcestershire County Council and the University of Worcester’s collection of books and documents, as well as the County’s archives and customer contact centre. It also houses one of Britain’s largest children’s libraries and a business centre.

Anne Hannaford, Director of Information and Learning Services at the University of Worcester, said: “The Hive has been carefully designed so that different spaces have very different atmospheres. This creates a wonderfully inspiring place for everyone to enjoy.

“We have created a new model of shared services and expertise through the integration of teams from the former public library and University, which has enabled The Hive to offer a truly eclectic programme of activities for the whole community.”

Kathy Kirk, Strategic Libraries and Learning Manager at Worcestershire County Council, said: “The Hive is an outstanding library and has established a reputation for creativity and hosting exciting events. 

“This beautiful building has already been recognised by numerous other awards including the Guardian University Awards for Contribution to the Local Community, the Times Higher Education Award in 2013 for the Most Outstanding Library Team, and the RIBA West Midlands National Award in 2013. To win the Bookseller Award, Library of the Year, would really be a fantastic testimony to this imaginative project.”