THOUSANDS of the world’s best academic papers are now available for free at Darlington libraries thanks to a new initiative.

Darlington Borough Council has joined the Access to Research project which is a collaboration between librarians and publishers who have made their journal content available for free to British libraries.

Crown Street and at Cockerton libraries are taking part to give licensed access to over 8,000 online journal articles across science, technology, medicine and other disciplines.

Nick Wallis, Darlington Borough Council’s cabinet member for Leisure, said: “We are delighted to be involved in the Access to Research project.

“This will offer meaningful research by helping users discover the most relevant content.

“The information can be accessed through any of the PCs in the e-library at Crown Street and at Cockerton library.

“There is no definitive list of what is available as it is a live resource with articles being added frequently.”