Six of the city’s libraries will open today : Central, Fountainbridge, Stockbridge, McDonald Road, Newington and Kirkliston.

Things will be a little different with restricted numbers in the buildings and social distancing including mandatory face coverings. Services will be a little restricted for now but you can do the following: browse and borrow books, use a public computer, apply for a bus pass, collect hearing aid batteries – all of which have to be booked online or by phoning the library direct.

You may return library books or pick up sanitary products without a booking.

Culture and Communities Convener Cllr Donald Wilson said:“It’s a really positive step forward that these six libraries are opening to the public ahead of schedule as they are invaluable resources for our local communities.

“Libraries are a vital requirement in any democratic society, giving access to knowledge and literature, helping to bridge the digital divide and also centres for strengthening local communities.”

Culture and Communities Vice Convener Cllr Amy McNeese-Mechan said:“We really appreciate everyone’s support and patience as we gradually reopen our libraries, welcoming people back into their local spaces.

“Although services will be limited initially due to current restrictions, with an online booking service for some such as browsing and borrowing, I’m sure everyone will fully appreciate that our top priority remains the health of our residents and library colleagues.

“This cautious approach demonstrates our commitment and recognition of the importance of public libraries in this, the world’s first UNESCO City of Literature.”