A visit to the Central Library in the Ilac Shopping Centre in Dublin.
In addition to book borrowing associated with traditional libraries, the Central Library offers a vast array of services in a friendly atmosphere.
Senior Librarian Angela Canavan explains the various cultural and leisure services available to the public at the Central Library. This includes a Business Information Centre, an Open Learning Centre, and a Music Library. The library also has a children's section which is particularly busy after school and on Saturdays.
People may spend a day here using the different sections.
There is plenty of space to sit and to make the right choice. Patrons can read the daily newspapers, borrow pictures, learn languages, brush up on computer skills and attend evening classes or lunchtime lectures.
During one lunchtime lecture, occupational therapist Orla O'Neill from the Saint John of God organisation speaks to a group about stress management.
Library assistant Anne-Marie Kelly says that anyone can join the library but a householder needs to sign the application form first. A separate Music Library ticket is required.
Pádraig Ó Laighin of the National Council of the Blind demonstrates the Central Libray’s Kurzweil Reading Machine which reads text on a page and speaks the words out loud. This machine was invented by Ray Kurzweil who is a friend of the blind singer Stevie Wonder.
This episode of ‘Súil Thart’ was broadcast on 25 November 1989. The reporter is Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill. This report is in Irish and English.