Epos (library ship)
Epos at dock in Bergen.
|Out of service||2020|
|Status||in active service, as of 2012[update]|
|Length||80 ft (24 m)|
Epos is a floating library that operated in the counties of Hordaland, Sogn og Fjordane and Møre og Romsdal in Norway. The service started in 1959 and visited tiny places in the three counties twice a year. In 2005 the ship was in service 126 days per year, lending 53,300 books. In 2020, the last trip the boat was to take was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the service officially ended.
The ship had room for 6,000 books, with a further 20,000 books out on loan at any given time. It often offered cultural activities for children, including musicians or dramas. This was often the only cultural services provided in the places it visited. The ship was manned by a captain, an able seaman, three librarians and one or two performers. The service was funded by the county libraries in the participating counties.
The first floating library service started in 1959 using a range of ships. The first custom-built ship was put into service in 1963. It is built at Oma Yard and is 24 m (80 ft) long. The ship is owned by Vinnes Skyssbåtservice, and is used for tourist cruises in the summer.