Come and use our computers for free!
We have approximately 200 computers available for you to use throughout Bolton libraries. Even our smaller libraries have public computers so come on in and take advantage of this free service. In addition our libraries offer wireless internet access. Just ask the staff next time you visit and they can help you log on to our Wi-Fi. The Central Library also has scanning facilities with a charge per page scanned. Visit the Library Charges page for further information.
If you aren't familiar with computers why not check out the beginners' computer classes we offer in several of our libraries. Alternatively, there are a range of online courses that you can work through at your own pace.
You can use our computers to:
- Access the internet and use web based email
- Use Microsoft Office 2010 applications (Word, Excel, Access, Frontpage, Publisher, InfoPath, and Powerpoint)
- Print documents in black and white (colour printing available in some libraries)
- Save documents onto a USB 'flash' drive (memory stick)
Booking a computer
Advanced bookings are not always necessary. If all computers are in use when you visit, you will be entered into a queue. You can pre-book a session up to one week in advance.
Bookings can be made in person when you visit the library or by telephone - see the Contact tab above.
How long can I use the computers for?
You can use the computer for up to an hour per day, for free. If there is no queue it is possible to book additional time on a computer. There is a charge for additional time, see the Library charges.
Additional free computer time can be made available for certain activities such as job searching, benefits applications and study or homework. Please ask a member of staff if you need an extended session for one of these purposes.
What do I do if I haven't finished my work at the end of my hour?
Five minutes before a session is due to end, the system will issue a warning. Two minutes before the session ends, the system will issue a critical warning. It is important to save your work at this time otherwise you will lose it. You can then either book for another day or pay for additional time, dependent upon demand.
Can I bring in my own memory stick to use on the computers?
Yes - you may attach media storage devices to suitably equipped computers. Under no circumstances can you attach any devices with processing capability to library computers. These include laptop computers, PDAs and mobile phones.
Internet usage terms and conditions
By using our computers you agree to be bound by our terms and conditions of use
Did you know that you can use our library internet PCs to access a range of online courses?
You can improve your computer skills, learn a language, or follow a range of interests through online learning. Library staff at all Bolton Libraries will be happy to show you how to get started on your chosen course – it’s easy and it’s FREE!
Learn My Way
A great new series of courses designed by UK Online taking students from the first steps in using computers, the internet and email to online shopping, digital photography, social media and getting the most from your mobile phone. There is a wealth of information for job seekers and links to useful public services websites. Take a look at this clear and easy to use site!
A large range of courses are available including:
First Click - activities, video guides and printable pages to help you get started with computers and the Internet.
Webwise – the BBC’s step by step beginners’ guide to the internet.
Skillswise – If you want to improve your English and Maths look at Skillswise; there are factsheets, worksheets, quizzes and games.
Language Courses – several different languages are available at a variety of skill levels with audio and video sections.
There are also a range of other short courses and links to sites on subjects including cooking; gardening; history; and personal development.
OpenLearn Learning Space
This site offers free access to academic course materials from the Open University. There are a wide variety of subjects covered in these short courses – arts; sciences; and social sciences – useful to either follow an interest or as a foundation for future study.
Futurelearn provides free online courses from leading UK and international universities; science & technology; arts & humanities; body & mind; and business and management
Tutor Led Classes
If you prefer to take part in a tutor led course – please ask library staff for details. Beginners’ courses take place at various libraries throughout the Bolton area. Here you can get to grips with the basics in a friendly group atmosphere. We also offer one-to-one sessions at selected libraries – led by volunteer Computer Mentors.
Times are displayed in a 24 hour format.