Wellington City Libraries

Te Matapihi Ki Te Ao Nui

Mō Te Whare Pukapuka o Te Takapū About Mervyn Kemp (Tawa) Library

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Our library and community

Tawa LibraryMervyn Kemp Tawa Library is the northernmost branch of the Wellington City Libraries network. Borrowers come from areas around Tawa such as Linden, Grenada North and Redwood. There are also many rental borrowers from the Porirua and Kapiti areas. On average we serve around 2500 customers per week. This includes many pre-school and primary school children.

The first library in Tawa was opened in August 1964 and was built by volunteer labour. It was only a temporary library, and a replacement was opened on the Main Road in October 1974. This Library was named after Tawa Mayor Mervyn Kemp. The new extension to the library was built in 2002 and officially opened in October 2002. The extension doubled the building's size and also allowed Mervyn Kemp Library's collection to be doubled in size as well. The Tawa Wall Hanging in the library depicts aspects of the Tawa Valley area. Several oil paintings also hang on the walls.

Near to the library there is an indoor swimming pool, a reasonably sized shopping centre and a medical centre. Situated on the main street of Tawa, the library is on the bus route and there is a train station close by.


Services we offer

Apart from regular library services such as answering enquiries, issuing and returning library items, the library is a pick-up and drop-off point for housebound items, where library items are collected by a designated person for elderly or incapacitated borrowers. Mervyn Kemp Library also holds popular preschool storytimes, Baby Rock & Rhyme and holiday programmes - for more details of these see our What's On page.

Free Wi-fi


Tawa Library has free wi-fi! Just bring in your wireless-compatible device, and you will be able to use Welly Wi-fi for free. Wi-fi is available Monday - Saturday during opening hours.

Free and Paid Internet Computers

We have computers offering free access to pre-selected internet sites, but if you want to use the internet for email or other general searching, we have several computers available for $3 for half an hour ($1.50 for 15 minutes) plus 20 cents per page printing charge. Our free internet service provides free access to websites we think are useful for information or research. These include websites such as online newspapers, government websites, some NZ websites, the websites recommended in our kids' catalogues and many more.

Word Processing

Free word processing is available from our computers and printing costs 20 cents per page. Software available includes: Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Microsoft PowerPoint and Adobe Reader 6.0. Memory sticks (USB devices) are available for purchasing.


Our photocopier provides both A4 (20 cents per copy) and A3 (40 cents) copies. It is coin-box operated, but we are able to give change.


ZoomText software is available to use on one of our public computers. ZoomText enlarges font size on webpages and electronic documents (email, newspaper databases etc) and can be set to read these aloud or display in high contrast large print. Ask at the information desk and a librarian will show you the ZoomText computer.

Fax Machine

We have a fax machine available. There is a $4 base charge for all faxes, plus per page charges for national and international faxes ($1.50 per page for national faxes, $6 per page for international faxes).

Children's Programmes

Tawa Library offers a range of FREE, fun and inspiring programmes and events for children including Baby Rock & Rhyme, Preschool Storytime, school visits and holiday activities. For more information about these programmes please visit the Tawa Library What's On page.

Other services

Apart from offering library services, customers can also buy Wellington City Council rubbish bags, recycling bags, recycling bins, and daily or monthly parking coupons.

Tawa Local History Books

Tawa Historical Society have published a number of excellent books which can be either be borrowed or purchased at Tawa library. Holding information is available via our catalogue.

Our Collection

Mervyn Kemp Library's collection offers a range of different material including: fiction, non-fiction, children's and young adult collections, large print books, bestseller magazines, magazines, audio books, kohikohinga Maori collection, comics, CDs, DVDs, Select DVDs, reference material and online databases. Mervyn Kemp Library has about 24,000 items in its collection.

The library holds two month's worth of copies of the Dominion Post. In addition, we also have local newspapers such as the Kapi-Mana and Porirua CityLife, and many Wellington City Council publications and various local news and information sources are also available.

Tawa : Takapū

The Māori branch name for Tawa (Mervyn Kemp) library is Takapū. This was a cultivation located in the valley of the Porirua Stream (originally Kenepuru) in the vicinity of the present Takapū Road. For more information, vist our Māori branch names page.

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