Oxford County Library


September 9, 2020


Thank you for your patience as Oxford County Library works toward a safe return to in-branch services.

Curbside service remains available at most of our branches. The Tillsonburg and Ingersoll branches expect to open for on-site services effective Wednesday, September 16. In the on-site services phase, library users will be able to find and borrow materials, use the public access computers by appointment, sit at tables, and use the wireless service indoors. Printing, copying, scanning, and faxing will be available, but access to the printer/copier is by staff only.

Upon arrival at the branch, patrons will be asked to self-screen. Staff will be there to explain the new procedures and safety protocols put in place to protect patrons and staff.

We will ask you to:

  • Wear a mask.
  • Maintain physical distancing at all times.
  • Use the hand sanitizer provided.

Visits of no more than one hour are encouraged, as the number of people allowed in the building at one time will be limited.

In-person library programs will not resume until further notice. We are working hard to ensure that future programs are designed to be able to meet the needs of our communities and delivered in a safe manner. Virtual programming will continue.

We recognize that some people cannot wear a face mask due to a disability. While people not wearing a face covering will be able to enter the building, they will receive library service in an alternate manner for the protection and comfort of library staff and other members of the public in the branch. Individuals not wearing masks will be provided in-branch services through picking up reserved library materials at the service desk (no browsing allowed), and through access to a separate public access computer station. Branch staff are always happy to work with individuals to select reading and viewing materials of interest and will gladly pull together a selection of materials for pick-up.

What about the other branches?

We are making plans to reopen some of our other branches this fall, however, there are safety features that must be put in place before we can do so. Curbside service has been an effective method of providing our customers with library materials, and is the safest method for our staff and the public. We know that members of the community need to be able to use our computers and get access to printing and copying services. Computer access hours may be limited and separate from regular open hours, in recognition of occupancy limits and staffing resources.

While there are no plans at this time to reopen the smaller branch facilities due to distancing restrictions, we are considering ways to clear as much space as possible in our smaller branches to allow access and maximize safety. In the meantime, curbside service will continue.

Free wireless service can be accessed outside of all OCL branches. Wireless speed has recently been increased at all 14 branch locations.

Staff are available by e-mail to help you find books to read and place holds for you.If you cannot attend curbside, and don’t have someone who could pick up books on your behalf, don’t forget that we can offer home delivery. For more information, e-mail curbsidebooks@ocl.net.

How to return books

We are currently accepting returns at all branches. You can return your material directly into our book return. Items will be quarantined for a minimum of 72 hours before they are checked in by staff so it may take several days before items are removed from you account. We are, as always, fine free so don't worry if you have to return your items a bit late.

Can you come into the library?

We are following provincial ministry guidelines closely and slowly reopening our library spaces as safely as possible. We are currently offering in-branch access at our Tillsonburg and Ingersoll branches.

Tillsonburg Hours:
Monday 2pm-8pm
Tuesday 11am-5pm*
Wednesday 2pm-8pm
Thursday 11am-5pm*
Friday 11am-5pm*
Saturday 10am-4pm
*11am-12pm on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday are reserved for vulnerable patrons

Ingersoll Hours (starting September 16):
Tuesday 1pm-7pm
Wednesday 11am-5pm
Thursday 1pm-7pm
Friday 11am-5pm
Saturday 10am-1pm

Where are we offering curbside pickup?

We are currently offering curbside pickup of holds at the following library branches: Brownsville, Burgessville, Embro, Harrington, Innerkip, Mount Elgin, Norwich, Otterville, Plattsville, Princeton, Tavistock, and Thamesford. You can pickup items that have been placed on hold during our curbside pickup hours:

Brownsville Curbside hours including: (starting Friday November 6)
Friday 10am-12pm *by appointment only

Burgessville curbside hours include:
Friday 3pm-6pm

Embro curbside hours include:
Wednesday 3pm-6pm

Harrington curbside hours include:
Wednesday 3pm-6pm

Innerkip curbside hours include:
Tuesday 3pm-6pm

Mount Elgin curbside hours include:
Tuesday 3pm-6pm

Norwich curbside hours include:
Tuesday 11am-2pm
Thursday 1pm-4pm

Otterville curbside hours include:
Wednesday 3pm-6pm

Plattsville hours include:
Tuesday 4pm-7pm
Thursday 9:30am-12:30pm

Princeton curbside hours include:
Wednesday 3pm-6pm

Tavistock curbside hours include:
Tuesday 11am-2pm
Thursday 1pm-4pm

Thamesford curbside hours include:
Tuesday 11am-2pm
Thursday 1pm-4pm

How to place holds

Items picked up during our curbside pickup must be placed on hold in advance.

You can place holds by:

1. Visit search.ocl.net, search for the item you are looking for, click "place a hold" and sign in using your library card and PIN number. You may choose from one of the twelve (12) curbside locations and two (2) in-branch locations: Brownsville, Burgessville, Embro, Harrington, Ingersoll (in-branch service), Innerkip, Mount Elgin, Norwich, Otterville, Plattsville, Princeton, Tavistock, Thamesford, or Tillsonburg (in-branch service). 
2. Email curbsidebooks@ocl.net with your library card number and the titles you would like placed on hold.
3. Contact your local branch and ask staff to place your hold (note: staff hours at some of our locations are limited).