The Public Libraries User Survey was carried out in all 22 of Manchester’s public libraries in February 2023.   

Earlier this year, the PLUS (Public Libraries User Survey) was carried out in libraries across the city. The surveys were analyzed and designed by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA), and were open to anyone aged 16 or over to complete.  

It has been revealed that over 94% of people visiting Manchester’s Libraries described the library they used as ‘very good’ or ‘good’. This is the highest ever figure for the 8 times the survey has been run.  

In addition to this, standards of customer care were also rated 3% higher than last time at 94% which is the highest in the history of Manchester’s Public Library User Surveys. 

The PLUS survey also asked library users about loneliness and how libraries help with their wellbeing.  44% of respondents said they felt lonely often or some of the time and of those who reported feeling lonely, a massive 73% said that the library helped to reduce these feelings of loneliness.    

Library users have complimented libraries in the city with one user saying “ It always lifts my mood to go there (Newton Heath Library), especially when I see people of all ages ….It is a vital hub at the centre of our rapidly growing ward in this great city; the best place to find out what is going on and where help may be available.   Groups and individuals find voices; hunger and poverty – not just of the food kind – are eased………..  It’s here for everyone……. I’m glad to have made friends here, and it’s such a help for my work.” 

Cllr John Hacking, Executive Member for Skills, Employment and Leisure, said:  

“ I would like to thank all of those who took time out of their days to complete our PLUS survey earlier this year.   It is clear that our libraries and their spaces are vital to the lives of our residents all over the city, and we’re delighted that these results confirm that.  These results are additionally a reflection of the high-quality services delivered at our 22 libraries, following continued investment in them by the Council.  Our library services continue to go from strength to strength and we can see that using your local library really does make you feel better!” 

To find out more about what happens in your local library and how you can join in by volunteering, go to