Halton Borough Council

First UK public library chooses open source library management system

London, 15th October 2010. Halton Borough Council has chosen the Koha open source library management system to replace its existing Dynix solution. PTFS Europe are carrying out the initial implementation and providing ongoing support. The system is hosted at the PTFS Europe data centre in Maidenhead.

Koha Library Management System

With Koha, library staff access is completely web-based; acquisitions, circulation, cataloguing, serials and reports are all done through a web browser. As well as an excellent search engine the OPAC offers a range of Web 2.0 and Library 2.0 facilities such as tagging, reviewing, public and private lists as well as integrating with services such as RSS, Twitter and Facebook.

Working with PTFS Europe provides the freedom and functionality of open source software together with the benefits of receiving high quality customer support.

Paula Reilly-Cooper, Library Services Manager at Halton said “This open source solution is the natural choice for Halton Libraries at a time of public service cuts and the need to justify our presence. The innate flexibility of the software and service from PTFS Europe will allow us to do so much more for less, enabling us to provide an enhanced, adaptable library and information service that meets changing customer expectation”

Nick Dimant, Managing Director at PTFS Europe said “We would like to thank the team at Halton for showing the vision and initiative to make this decision. The challenging economic climate is proving to be a catalyst. It is encouraging libraries to realise that by moving to Koha they can benefit from this combination of good functionality and modern technologies at a reduced cost.”

About Halton Borough Council Library Service

Halton is a unitary authority serving a population of 119,500 in the communities of Widnes, Runcorn and surrounding villages and has four libraries based in Ditton, Halton Lea, Runcorn and Widnes plus a Mobile Library.

The service has approximately 150,000 books and other materials for loan, offers a reference and information service including access to local history and photographic archives and has a special Railway Collection at Widnes Library. Over 100 computers throughout the service provide free Internet access and a wide range of online courses and materials.

The introduction of the a new Library Management System is part of the programme of modernisation of the service which has involved the complete refurbishment of 3 out of 4 of the library buildings. Halton Lea Library received 1.3 million pounds from the Big Lottery Community Libraries Programme which enabled the development of the library and community facilities including dedicated teenage and community history spaces, cafe, meeting rooms, ICT Suite, creche, training kitchen, and the introduction of self service, WiFi and the self management of public computers. Self Service is being extended to the rest of the libraries over the next six months.

More information on Halton Libraries

http://www3.halton.gov.uk/educationandlearning/libraries/

About PTFS Europe

PTFS Europe implements and supports the Koha and Evergreen open source library management systems as well as distributing and supporting the software products of PTFS, Inc., the leading provider of digital archiving solutions in North America. PTFS Europe is able to provide the full range of services needed to implement a library or digital archival solution, ranging from project management, installation, configuration, data conversion and training through to ongoing customer support.

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