Lake Macquarie City Council launches The Rover today | photos

ARE you old enough to remember the old Bookmobiles that would visit schools around Lake Macquarie and Tuggerah Lakes?

The 21st century version of the old Bookmobile has made its debut in Lake Macquarie.

The Rover ventured out for the first time on Monday, bringing a re-imagined mobile library service to the streets and suburbs of Lake Macquarie.

Mayor Kay Fraser unveiled The Rover to a crowd of eager students from Valentine Public School at the official ceremony at Allambee Park, Valentine, where they were treated to a walking story from local writer Ant Wood, author of Dancing Charli.

“The Rover is an extension of our Lake Mac Libraries services and allows us to bring new experiences to people across the city at parks, community centres, neighbourhoods, events and festivals,” Cr Fraser said.

The Rover is a pop-up activity centre in a van.

It offers access to new technology, classes, games, books and unexpected events.

Sporting colourful and quirky monsters created by Australia’s illustrator extraordinaire, Tim Meakins, The Rover’s exterior invites residents to expand their world.

Council’s cultural services manager, Jacqui Hemsley, said the new service was about engaging with local communities and providing opportunities to connect and learn through new technologies, resources and programming.

“Stepping into one of our libraries is like entering a new world where you can explore, connect, learn and create,” Ms Hemsley said.

“The Rover will add to the unique services Lake Mac Libraries already provides to the community, encouraging people to grasp new opportunities, create and share ideas and enjoy new experiences,” Ms Hemsley said.

The Rover will make its first event appearance this Saturday, May 27, at SwanFest held on the foreshore at Swansea.

To find out when The Rover will be in your local area, download the timetable from

Meanwhile, year 12 students are invited to take part in the council’s ‘HSC Success - The Finishing Line’ seminar at Charlestown Library on Tuesday night, June 20.

To find out more, phone the library on 4921 0792.