Bolton Library and Museum Services

Join the Library

Membership of the library is free and anyone can join

To obtain a Bolton library card simply visit your local library with proof of ID to confirm your name and address.  You can also join the library online here. Opening times for libraries in Bolton can be found on the Plan your visit pages. Once you are a library member, your library card can be used at any Bolton library for everything you want to borrow and to access public computers.  You will also need your library number to access the libraries online resources from home.


What can I borrow?

You can borrow books, DVDs, Videos, CDs, and Language courses from Bolton libraries.  In general, non-fiction videos, non-fiction DVDs and language courses are free to borrow.  We also have talking books on cassette and CD. These are free to borrow for people with disabilities although all other borrowers will be charged the standard hire charge for these items.  For details of the current library charges, please see Library charges.

We also have a wide range of reference items which cannot be taken out of the library, although you will find plenty of study areas within the library where you can sit and do your research in comfort.


What if I haven't finished my book when it is due back?

You can renew your books by logging into your account online here.

Alternatively, if you are a Bolton library card holder, you can phone the automated renewals line on 01204 332384.

If you have borrowed items from us using a membership card issued by another Greater Manchester library service and would like to renew by telephone, please ring 01204 333173 during our Central Library opening hours.

I’ve tried to renew my books online/by phone but it doesn’t seem to be working.

There are a number of reasons why the system may not allow you to renew your books this time:

• The online system allows 2 unseen renewals only. You will need to bring the items in to a library to have them renewed again.

• The item may have been reserved by another customer.

• Your membership may be about to expire. Contact your nearest library to speak to a member of staff.

  • If you have 16P at the beginning of your library card number ignore this and enter the rest of the numbers including the X at the end if you have one.


Where can I return items?

In general, you may return items borrowed from any Bolton library, to any Bolton library.  The only exception to this is with new DVDs which can only be borrowed from and returned to the same library.

When you join any of our public libraries in Bolton, your membership card entitles you to borrow items from all of our libraries.


How do I reserve items?

There are a number of ways to reserve library items:

  • Log into your account on our library catalogue using your library card and pin number. Search for the item you would like to reserve and click the 'Place Reservation' button at the bottom of the item detail screen.
  • Fill out a Contact Us form with your library membership number and details of the book you wish to reserve. This would also be the preferred method of contact should you wish to reserve an item which is not currently in stock at Bolton Libraries.
  • Ask a member of staff at your local library. Find your nearest library here.
  • If you need any help with any of the above please contact Ask Bolton Libraries by calling: 01204 332853 or e-mailing:



Borrower entitlements;



DVDs / Videos*

 eBooks / eAudiobooks 




 6 / 6

Young adults (11-16)



 6 / 6

Children (0-10)



 6 / 6




*  A hire charge is payable for feature film DVDs and videos. There is no charge for non-fiction DVDs and videos.

** Children and Young Adults may only borrow children's DVDs