Burley Library

Burley's Community Managed Library

Following Bradford Council's decision to reduce their expenditure across their library network the Parish Council agreed to take over the running of the library service from April 2017. Although Bradford will not pay staffing costs, subject to review, they have offered to provide:
  • The lease of the building
  • The transfer of the existing stock of books and computers
  • New books on a regular basis
  • Payment of energy/business rates/etc.
  • Access to a repairs and improvement fund for the building, although no firm commitment was given on the size of the fund or likelihood of obtaining grants.
  • Training for volunteers
The Parish Council have been fortunate to secure the services of over 60 volunteers to help run library services and activities. In addition, the Parish Council have appointed a Senior Libary Assistant to over see existing book lending ad help develop a range of new activities
Should anyone have any comments about existing services or ideas for new services, please contact the Parish Clerk.


The refurbishment of the Library will partially overlap with work on the Queens Hall and will commence on Monday 15th April, completing on Friday 17th May. It will also be necessary to close the library to the public for 25 days from Monday 8th April in order to clear stock and protect equipment that cannot be moved easily.

The library committee is currently in the process of agreeing colour schemes for walls and carpets, scheduling the moving of library stock and furniture, as well as organising the disposal of existing library shelving. New shelving is being installed throughout at a cost £20,000, funded in part by a donation from Burley Community Trust. If any resident feels that they can make use of old library shelving, please contact the Parish Clerk before 8th April.

Inevitably the budget does not quite stretch to include one or two items we would really like to include. If any local businesses or individuals would like to contribute towards specific items, for which they would receive appropriate recognition, the library team would be really pleased to hear from you.

A full schedule of works for the Library can be found here



Library contact details
Address: Burley Library, Grange Road, Burley-in-Wharfedale, Ilkley, LS29 7HD
Phone: 01943 863714

Opening Hours
Monday: 10am - 5pm
Tuesday: 10am - 5pm
Wednesday: Closed
Thursday: 1pm - 6pm
Friday: 10am - 5pm
Saturday: 10am - 1pm

  • Disabled access
  • Audio books
  • Children's activities
  • Free Internet access and word processing, with print capabilities from the library computers
  • Knitting Group every Thursday at 4pm.
  • Fiction Reading Group for Adults - 2.30pm four weekly on Friday

Burley Library Website

Library News

Content coming soon

March 2019

The time has come for the refurbishment of Burley Library.  It's last day open to the public will be Saturday 6th April between 10 am and 1 pm.  It will be closed from Monday 8th April to Saturday 1st June inclusive and, if all goes to plan, will reopen to the public on Monday 3rd June at 10 am.  This closure period includes one week for packing up the library, five weeks for the contractors and two weeks for the new shelving to be installed and unpacking of the library books and equipment.

In the last month the library has had two very successful events. Firstly, a visit from local best-selling author Imogen Clark on 15th February which had 28 attendees. Then on 7th March a World Book Day Extravaganza, which started with a visit by author Cathy Oakley Calvert and illustrator Margaret Swift plus Ned the sheepdog and 24 children attended this. This was swiftly followed by Maddie's "massive cake sale". Almost 300 people visited the library that day.

In the coming month there is the final pre-refurbishment meeting of the Burley Reading Group on Friday 22nd March at 2.30 pm. They intend to meet at the Coffee Station monthly while the library is closed. There are also a couple of police drop-in surgeries on Monday 18th March and Tuesday 26th March - both from 11 am to 12 noon.

While the library is closed customers can manage their accounts online at www.burleylibrary.org or use other Bradford Council libraries in person. See the Burley Library website for details about the location and opening times of Ilkley and Menston Libraries.

All the staff and volunteers (60+) at Burley Library look forward to welcoming customers back to the newly refurbished library in June. It may even look as good as in this original artist's impression!

February 2019

Thursday 7th March is World Book Day and Burley Library will be celebrating in style. Instead of Tiny Rhymers that afternoon, there will be a special children's author and illustrator visit which has been organised by Bradford Libraries. The event starts at 1.45 pm and all under 5s or home-schooled over 5s are welcome. Author of "Ned go to Bed", Cathy Oakley Calvert will be visiting along with Ned the sheepdog and illustrator Margaret Swift. They will be telling Ned's adventures and then children will have the opportunity to create their own Ned storyboard.

Following straight on from this event at 2.45 pm Maddie is running a cake and refreshment sale, share a book with your kids and design a bookmark. This will continue for the after-school children. Last year's World Book (Snow) Day had a magnificent attendance of 325.

There will be no Tuneful Tuesdays or Tiny Rhymers the week commencing 18th February as it is half term.

The next date for the Burley Reading Group is Friday 22nd February at 2.30 pm and new members are always welcome. They meet once a month in the library for chat and refreshments.

Finally, the next Volunteer Meeting is on Friday 15th March at 1 pm in the library. It would be great if as many volunteers as possible could attend as there will be an update on the library refurbishment. There will also be discussions on the logistics involved since as many strong hands as possible will be needed to help with "packing" and "unpacking" the library in April and May.

January 2019

Burley Library launched a new rhymetime for babies and their carers on Thursday 10th January.  Tiny Rhymers will run every Thursday term-time from 2.15 pm and will last about 30 minutes.  Thanks go to our new volunteer Vanessa for being willing to lead this weekly event.  Maddie continues to run Tuneful Tuesdays for under 5’s on Tuesdays term-time only from 1.45 pm.

There is a display of new books in the foyer for those seeking something different in 2019.  The displays inside the library are racing through the alphabet and were last seen at the letter "F".

Over 75 people attended the Christmas Day opening and it was deemed a great success. There have been many words of thanks and even a few cards.  Thanks to Niccola Swan and her willing "army" of volunteers for organising and running this event.

Finally there will be a bestselling local author visit and talk on Friday 15th  February at 2 pm.  Imogen Clark - author of "The Thing About Clare" and "Postcards From a Stranger" - will be giving a free talk and taking questions. This will be followed by refreshments.  All library members and non-members are welcome to attend. 

December 2018

The Knitting Group has made a wonderful Dickensian scene based on A Christmas Carol and welcome new members or just those seeking their expert advice.  The scene is on display now and the group meets on Thursdays in the library from 4 pm.

This year the library will again be open on Christmas Day between 2 pm and 4 pm for good company, refreshments, games and live music plus the opportunity to borrow and return books.  This follows last year's very successful event when over 100 people took the time to drop in.  If anyone knows anyone who lives alone or may appreciate some company and/or needs help in getting to the library please get in touch in advance on 01943 863714.

The Burley Painting is now complete and there is a display in the library showing its progress from commission to completion.

Tuneful Tuesdays for under 5’s will be participating in the Bradford Libraries Rhyme Challenge as in previous years.  It starts on Tuesday 8th January at 1.45 pm and runs for 4 weeks ending on Tuesday 29 January at 1.45 pm with a special visit from Bookstart Bear to give out certificates to the children who attend.  There is no need to attend every week but each week a new rhyme or two will be learnt along with the usual fun of Tuneful Tuesdays.  On Tuesday 15th January an outside organisation will be leading - Tiny Signers.

All these events are free to attend and it is free to join and borrow books from anywhere within the Bradford network of libraries.  The library also has free wi-fi and free access to a number of subscription sites including Ancestry and FindMyPast.  Bradford libraries also have a service for downloading e-books and e-audiobooks which are also free of charge. 


November 2018

Currently on view at the library are several of the displays created by the Burley Local History Group to mark the end of the First World War in the village.  The exhibition goes into detail about the people who supported the war effort, and the places in Burley that were featured at the time.  The display is on view during normal library opening hours, and volunteers from the Burley Local History Group will be available for questions and discussion on Tuesday and Friday afternoons from 2.30 to 4.30 pm.  The library also has a large selection of books related to this period which will be on display in the foyer until the end of November.  They are free to borrow.

The Library Outreach Coordinator Maddie Coelho recently had a very busy day in the library on Tuesday 6 November.  Burley Oaks Reception Classes (60+ children) visited for a special story and craft activities including an introduction to the library and what it offers.  Many of the children are already members, but new members are always welcome; it is free to join both to borrow books and attend activities.  Maddie based her event on the book "Little Monkey" by Marta Altes which has been given to all reception-aged children in England by the Book Trust under the theme "Time to Read".  In the afternoon she had her regular Tuneful Tuesdays slot which runs from 1.45 to 2.45 pm for under 5s and their carers.  That week nearly 40 children attended so Maddie had almost 100 children to entertain in the library that day!

The Burley Painting continues and is due to be completed for unveiling at the Christmas lights switch-on Saturday 1st December 2018.  The artist Ian Middleton is working on it and is available to discuss the work on Thursday afternoons between about 2 pm and 4 pm until the work is finally complete. 

The next Burley Reading Group meeting is on Friday 23rd November at 2.30 pm and new members are welcome.  Finally, the Christmas books will be ready to borrow by the beginning of December

October 2018

Burley Library has recently had a delivery of new adult and children's books, along with some pristine donations that have been added to our stock and are now ready to be borrowed.

If you can't find a book that you want at Burley Library, members can either request the book online at www.burleylibrary.org and have it delivered to the library free of charge, or pop in to the library and ask the volunteers to reserve it for you.  This applies to any book available throughout the Bradford Libraries' system.  If Bradford doesn’t have the item, charges do apply for requesting - ask at the library for more details.

In addition to this influx of new books Burley Library regularly exchanges books with other libraries so you can always find something new to Burley Library.  It most certainly isn't just full of old books ... and caters for all ages, abilities and tastes.  We welcome donations of pristine quality recently published books - "once read!"  Unfortunately Bradford will not accept anything older or well-read, and any donations of this sort will be added to our book sale which raises funds for the library.  Most books on our book sale are available for just 50p each.

There is a police drop-in session with our local community support officer on Tuesday 30th October from 11.00-12.00.  On the same day there is a special Tuneful Tuesdays for the under 5s at 1.45 pm in expectation of Halloween.  On 11th November there will be a special display in the Queens Hall by the Burley Local History Group to commemorate 100 years since the end of World War 1.  Some of this material will be briefly on display in the library before it moves to the Queens Hall.  The library will be supporting this with a display of WW1 books which will be free to borrow