I became Chair of the Yorkshire and Humber health Libraries Knowledge Network (YOHHLNet) in May 2020 after a period of co-Chairing with Becky Williams. YOHHLNet is a network of health library and information services across East Yorkshire, North Yorkshire, South Yorkshire, West Yorkshire and Lincolnshire.

I missed the development of the network as I was on maternity leave and returned back in 2016 to an established network starting to get to work.  Soon after, I joined the YOHHLNet committee.

YOHHLNet was officially launched on 12th December 2016 at a Leeds Christmas Study Day event.  YOHHLNet exists primarily to encourage partnership working, collaboration and staff development across the health libraries of Yorkshire and the Humber.  David Stewart was integral to the establishment of YOHHLNet.  He saw the success of other networks including LIHNN and wanted to share the good practice across all the northern regions.  Therefore, he encouraged health librarians across Yorkshire and Humber to establish a network and provided funding to support it.

Since then, YOHHLNet has gone from strength to strength, delivering a CPD programme for members and providing bursaries for several conferences and events.

The YOHHLNet membership includes NHS, Local Authority, and academic institutions, and library services of other health and social care organisations and continues to grow.

YOHHLNet’s successes include:

  • CPD programme – wide range of events available to all staff in the YOHHLNet membership
  • Annual Christmas Study Days and YOHHLNet awards – these are chaired by David and include his Directors Award.
  • Conference and CPD bursaries
  • Communities of Practice for specific areas of work and interests
  • Increased network and partnership working across the region

What does the future hold for YOHHLNet? In these changed times there is a lot of opportunity for CPD events. There could also be the prospect for YOHHLNet to work more closely with our neighbouring networks in the North, sharing knowledge and expertise.

There will be plenty of opportunities for services in Yorkshire and the Humber to be involved in YOHHLNet in the year ahead - please get in touch if you would like to know more!

Many thanks once again to David for his encouragement and leadership in the development of our network.

Heather Steele
Chair of YOHHLNet
Library and Knowledge Services Manager
Leeds and York Partnership NHS Foundation Trust