Category: Library News

The latest from the City Library

Awapuni Library is closed

While Awapuni Library is getting some repair work done, we’ve got some great news – we’re still here for you!

We’ve set up some pop-up libraries around the area so you can still get your reading fix and borrow all your favourite books. Check this list for times and dates. We’re also pleased to let you know that our programmes are still going ahead.

Check this FAQ page regularly to stay up to date with the repairs and any changes to our services.

We can’t wait to see you soon!

Mobile Library timetable update

A few tweaks have been made to the Mobile Library timetable. Most of the stops are unchanged, but if you’re a regular user of the service, please check the timetable on our website just in case.

If you’ve never used the Mobile Library before, maybe now is the time to get onboard? If the Mobile stops near your house, you might find it very useful because you can reserve books from any of the other library locations and have them driven to you! The Mobile also has its own stock, which is refreshed regularly, so you can make your selections when it comes around, if you don’t have any reserved items to pick up.

If you don’t have a library card, you can get one on the bus!

You’ll also see the Mobile Library at events such as Explore Esplanade Day.

The Palmerston North Mobile Library service is 50 years old this year. Looking forward to making it a full century, getting out and serving the community!

‘Writing For Children’ panel discussion

Some of Aotearoa New Zealand’s best writers will feature again in this year’s Off the Page series.

We launch on Wednesday 26 April, 6:30pm with a panel discussion on Writing for Children featuring a panel of multi-award winning authors.

Kate de Goldi
 says, “there is nothing quite as rousing and nourishing for a writer as close proximity to the imaginative life and perspective of young people”. Read about Kate’s life in books and thoughts on reading or listen to her talk about her passion for hooking children into good quality literature and her work co-editing Annual, a collection of stories, comics, poems, crosswords, games and songs – created by some of the best New Zealand writers and illustrators – now up to its third edition.

Brigid Feehan thinks that young people and older people sometimes see things clear and true – things that people in the middle might be too distracted to see. Her latest novel, The Life and Times of Eddie McGrath, portrays the forming of a strong bond between an old woman and a young girl, who only meet by chance, over their shared affinity for animals. Read about her approach to writing for young adults.

One piece of advice Philippa Werry offers to young writers is, “Be curious. People tell each other stories every day. Learn to listen to them”. Philippa wanted to be a writer from very young and wrote stories, poems and book reviews for the Children’s Page in the Saturday Evening Post newspaper, “and I still have the book that I pasted them into!” Check out this Stuff article about her influences and how she writes.

Anna McKenzie was born here in Palmerston North before moving to Hawkes Bay. Extremely versatile in her approach, her most recent novel tells the story of a young woman coming of age in the years of WWI. Listen to Anna talking at NZ Festival Writers Week about the origins of Evie’s War, the stories that stand behind it and the research that supports it.

The Off The Page series includes talks, readings, discussions and workshops from and for writers and connects the Manawatū to the beating heart of contemporary literature. The series is a partnership between Massey University School of Humanities, Media and Creative Communication, Bruce McKenzie Booksellers and the Palmerston North City Library.

Versions Tuawhā submissions are open!

The Versions writing project is on again this year!

This is a great opportunity to see your name in print. If you want to have a go at writing a short story, a poem, or a play, use our prompt as a jumping-off point. Your story doesn’t have to be directly related to the prompt, it’s only there if you need something to get started.

Deadline for submissions is August 31, and we’ll publish a physical book as well as an ebook in October.

Prompt – The day Mark Twain came to town.

There will be some workshops to help you along the way – keep an eye on our What’s On page.

Submissions and questions can be sent to

Let your creative muse fly!

Census 2023

Palmerston North City Library will be hosting events where you can get assistance with filling out your census form.

During these drop-in sessions, there will be Census staff/volunteers from Stats NZ on hand to help.

You simply need to bring your paper forms or online code.

Outside of these events, you are welcome to come in and use the computers and free wi-fi to self-complete your census forms.  Library staff cannot fill out the forms for others, but we can put you in touch with people who will help.

Times and locations:

Central Library March 8th, 11am – 1pm

Te Pātikitiki Library, March 14, 10am – 1pm

Ashhurst Library, March 14, 3pm – 5pm

Roslyn Library, March 15, 10am – 1pm

Youth Space, March 15, 2pm – 4pm

Awapuni Library, March 16, 10am – 1pm

Library newsletters

Stay up to date with the Palmerston North City Library – subscribe to our monthly newsletter!

Each month you’ll get an email highlighting what’s coming up, things we’re excited about, and ways to get the most out of your library membership.

In addition, we now offer a New Titles newsletter. All the latest books that have been added to our collection – straight to your inbox each week! Reserving cool new books has never been easier.

You can browse the previous New Title lists here.

To see all our email newsletter options, sign up here, or simply ask a librarian next time you’re visiting one of our branches.

Library podcast – Shelf Awareness

The Library now has its own podcast! Thanks to Manawatū People’s Radio, Shelf Awareness airs live at 10am on Wednesdays, but you can listen to it at any time on the MPR website.

You can expect to hear about all the great stuff the library offers, from books to author talks to outreach programmes. Plus there’ll be reading recommendations, and interviews where library staff talk about what they do in their jobs, and how they can help you.

Is there something you’d like us to talk about? Let us know:

Holiday hours

If you’re planning to pop into the library to stock up on reading material soon, you’ll be pleased to hear that we have extended our opening hours on certain days at the Central Library (on the Square) to make it easier.

Sunday 18 Dec: 10am – 4pm

Tuesday 20 Dec: 9am – 7pm

Wednesday 21 Dec: 9am – 7pm

All locations will be closed between Christmas and the New Year like the rest of Council.

You can see all our library locations and their open hours on the PDF below, or on the Locations page on our website.

Digital Library:

There’s one part of the library that’s always open – the digital library!
You can get ebooks, e-audio, movies, magazines, and more, from the comfort of your own home.

There’s even a specific page for a Children’s Digital Library, to keep the young ones entertained.

The Story of Home Service Deliveries

Two women at a Home Delivery in 1975.

2022 marks 50 years of the library’s Home Service deliveries to members of the public who can’t visit because of illness, disability, limited mobility, and support. This is the story of our home service deliveries from 1972 to today.


In February, a ‘Housebound’ service began as a trial, with 17 customers and 6 delivery volunteers. By November the service was made permanent.


The service has six volunteer delivery drivers, 17 housebound clients, and was expanded to 3 local rest homes. The image to the right shows a home service delivery taking place in 1975 and was originally published in the Manawatū Guardian. Source: Manawatū Heritage.


The talking book service was enabled by the Palmerston North Rotary Club. As part of the Rotary International 75th Jubilee project, $3,000 was donated to the Library to provide about 100 talking books (audio books) to start the scheme.

The new Talking Book kit under review by Marie Moncrieff, Librarian; William Mansfield; and Dorothy Mansfield (‘House-bound’ borrower)

Originally published in the Manawatū Evening Standard in 1979. Source: Manawatū Heritage


The service was expanded to 30 volunteer drivers and 65 clients.


Under the guidance of Housebound Coordinator Deon Knox, the service had 40 volunteer drivers!


The service had 82 clients.

Having the Home Service is excellent for me. I don’t have any transport except taxis, so having books and a jigsaw puzzle delivered every few weeks is something I look forward to and enjoy.  I love reading, it takes you out of where you are and to wherever you’re reading about. Jigsaws are always a challenge – the harder ones are the ones I really enjoy.  Because of Covid, meeting and talking with anyone who delivers the books and puzzles hasn’t been possible but to me, the Home Service is JUST THE BEST. 

Home Service client Betty Holmes


The Library’s Home Service are shared winners of Asia Award for home services and reminiscence programme.


Heather Hurrell retired after 10 years as home services coordinator. In November Nora Kilpin took up the reigns as home service coordinator, and is still in the role in 2022.

The service introduced new ‘Victor’ players for the audiobooks, replacing the ‘daisy players’ that were offered to customers for long term loans. 

Home Service deliveries offer a chance to chat.

Source: Manawatū Heritage


Covid-19 restrictions pause Home Service deliveries during the first lockdown of 2020. When lockdown was lifted, staff picked up more of the selecting and delivery work, to keep our clients and volunteers safe.


February saw 50 years since the inception of the service, while November is 50 years since the service was an official, permanent service at Palmerston North City Library.

We welcomed back our volunteers from July.

Being an avid reader myself I have enjoyed selecting for those who otherwise might be deprived of reading material. Long may this fantastic service continue.

Home Service volunteer Annette Bolton 

I’d like to help!

Our volunteers select books according to our client’s preferences, and deliver and pick up bundles once a month, on DAY OF WEEK/ DATE. We are always happy to welcome new volunteers – to find out more contact us here.

I’m interested in receiving Home Service deliveries

If you’re unable to visit us because of illness, disability or limited mobility, and no-one else can do this for you then the Home Service may be for you. We discuss your interests and needs, and select a bundle just for you. And it’s not just books – we deliver music, DVDs and puzzles too!

Contact us by email, or call (06) 351 4100.

Together We Read

This month Palmerston North City Library is participating in Together We Read, New Zealand’s largest online book club!

Between October 13 to 27, everyone with a library card is invited to join Together We Read. With your library card, you can borrow an e-book or e-audiobook copy of New Zealand author Nikki Crutchley’s critically acclaimed novel To the Sea.

How does it work?

To join New Zealand’s largest annual online book club, you will need:

  • Your library card number (on the back of your card) and pin number
  • To download the free Libby App on your device. (from the Apple App Store or Google Play)
  • Download To the Sea by Nikki Crutchley as an ebook. It’s free and there are no holds or waiting
  • Start reading!
  • During the two weeks for reading, you can join the author Nikki Crutchley and other readers across New Zealand for online discussions.

Once you have downloaded the Libby app, get your library card and log in with the barcode number and your pin.

If you’ve forgotten your pin, give us a call on (06) 351 4100.

I need a library membership

  1. You can join at any one of our library locations. Bring in some ID and proof of your address to any one of our libraries, and we’ll sign you up. OR
  2. The fastest way to join is to sign up and participate is to for a digital membership with Palmerston North City Library
  3. The form asks you to choose a library to join – pick Palmerston North Central Library
  4. Pick ‘Digital Only Membership‘. This way, you skip the need to provide proof of your address and can use our digital resources (including Libby) straight away
  5. (You can change your digital membership to a full membership with a card if you bring proof of your address into any one of our libraries)
  6. Fill in the rest of your details, read and accept the Terms and Conditions, and click REGISTER
  7. Log in to Libby with your membership, download To The Sea (and anything else that catches your eye), and you’re all set to start reading!

If you’re stuck, give us a call on (06) 351 4100

The Story

To the Sea by Nikki Crutchley (Harper Collins) is an atmospheric, suspenseful, dark and twisty thriller in the tradition of Daphne du Maurier, Paula Hawkins, Anna Downes and JP Pomare. Longlisted for the 2022 Ngaio Marsh Award, To the Sea is compulsively readable, keeping you guessing until late into the night, described by Rose Carlyle as, “An enthralling thriller, as beautiful and deadly as an ocean storm.”

How do I participate?

You are invited to join the zoom launch with Overdrive and author Nikki Crutchley on Thursday 13 October at 7pm.

Zoom link. the passcode is 203012

Or, you can call in from your mobile or landline to listen and join in. Simply call

09 884 6780, or
03 659 0603, or
04 886 0026

Join the discussion board online, for you to chat with other people and share your thoughts on the book as you progress.

What is Libby?

The Libby App is an award-winning digital app from OverDrive, and holds the industry’s largest digital literary catalogue. Available through most local libraries across New Zealand, Libby is a free service offering access to e-books, audio books and other digital content across numerous devices including iPhone®, iPad®, Android™ phones and tablets, Chromebook™, and Kobo® tablets and eReaders.