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Lyttelton, portal to Canterbury’s historic past, a vibrant sustainable community creating a living future

LIFT Library

lift-librayOver six hundred books on the transition movement, alternative currencies, sustainability and community development, economics, food, health, and relevant DVDs and magazines.

  • Join the library for life for only $20 and borrow anything you are interested in.
  • Come to the library and browse the bookshelves – in the foyer of the Lyttelton Rec Centre, 25 Winchester St. Monday to Friday 10am to 4pm, and Saturday 10am to 2pm
  • Members are kept updated through regular newsletters.
  • Free film screenings – thought provoking, interesting and inspirational – a Saturday afternoon, a Friday evening, a Tuesday afternoon each month.

Why is it the LIFT Library?


Because Living Economies and Project Lyttelton hope it will provide Inspiration plus Facts to enable Transition to a community and lifestyle determined and developed and supported by the people for the people!

LIFT library is a diverse collection of resources to inform and empower change covering topics from the money system to organic gardening and health.

It was started by volunteer Juliet Adams (pictured) after a conversation at a time bank hui held in Lyttelton after the earthquakes.

A passionate advocate for the planet, Juliet set up the library in her home to promote new ideas during the rebuild. The collection has grown and now is housed at the Lyttelton Recreation Centre.

Juliet is incredibly knowledgeable about the collection and welcomes the chance to chat to anyone wanting to learn more about what we can do about the global challenges we face together. Juliet also runs regular film nights for koha followed by chat time and a cup of tea.

“The films look at how we can manage our lives for the health of ourselves, our communities and the planet," Juliet said.

Email Juliet to sign up to the LIFT newsletter and get updates on film nights, new items and reviews.

The LIFT Library is located at 25 Winchester Street, Lyttelton
Open Monday to Friday 10am - 4pm and Sat 10am-1pm.

Juliet is on the front desk Tuesday afternoons and Friday and Saturday mornings.

The LIFT Library is supported by Chantal Jousserand-Shirley, who is a Project Lyttelton Board member.

Contact Juliet: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 328 8139 or 021 899 404

Living Economies LIFT Partnership

The Living Economies Educational Trust is a nationwide organization aiming to strengthen and help sustain regional economies by promoting interest-free means of exchange: currencies complementing money in local communities. Helen Dew in Carterton, and Margaret Jefferies here in Lyttelton, are Board members, and together initiated the LIFT Library here.

Many of the books and DVDs have been supplied by Living Economies; many can be bought on-line, where you can read short reviews of them.

Visit Living Economies and their bookshop at:


LIFT Book Reviews

Juliet has written reviews of many books in the library. Here is an excerpt of the latest book review:


LIFT Review: Choosing a Sustainable Future: Ideas and Inspiration from Ithaca
By Liz Walker

Did you know that Lyttelton Timebank was the first one in New Zealand? Margaret Jefferies, of Project Lyttelton, made a visit in 2004 to Ithaca, New York, with Helen Dew of Living Economies, after attending a conference on complementary currencies, and came back and started Lyttelton Timebank in 2005. Since then, Timebanking has gradually spread all over New Zealand. So has Living Economies, the backbone of the LIFT Library.

Margaret is a real “kick-starter”, which is why she visited Ithaca, because that city has a history of initiating ideas and systems that are focussed on community, sustainability, cooperation, local production, environmental stewardship, social justice, and honest prosperity.

This book, published in 2010, covers a huge range of developments in that area of Ithaca City and Tompkins County, famous for its Cornell University, its liberal politics, its Farmers Market and so on.

As the world’s population becomes increasingly based in expanding cities, and focussed on making money, the qualities of village and small community life are easily lost, along with our connection to nature. But grassroots action valuing cooperation between people and respect for all life is growing in many countries, including New Zealand. LIFT Library has much material on this aspect.

This book is a leader in this area. I urge all LIFT members who care about improving our local world to read it (as quickly as possible, so others can too!) and choose an aspect introduced here that you can focus on yourself. In the meantime, if you go to Youtube and look for Liz Walker, Ecovillage in Ithaca, you’ll see her background, which got her into writing this book.

Free Film Screening with Lift Library


WHEN? Friday 15th, 1-3pm 

WHERE? Cathedral Square 


Pre Event Friday March 8th.


Come and found out why, and how to do it,at Lyttelton Rec Centre, 25 Winchester St

FRIDAY MARCH 8th, 7pm.

Special video clips for kids aged 8 plus,so bring your friends and parents,talk about what you see, and


Lifelong membership for $20

The $20 fee is per person/couple/family and entitles you to borrow books, DVDs and magazines for a month at a time. Members who cannot return books personally may post them back to Juliet at 34a Voelas Road, Lyttelton 8082, as the Rec Centre does not have a letterbox.”Members who lose or damage books will be asked to pay accordingly.

A full list of books, DVDs and magazines is available from Juliet by email. Members receive regular newsletters with book reviews and the latest news and reviews.

LIFT's Reviews & Summaries

Click for more Book & DVD Reviews

 Wanting to read one of our great books but just don't have time?

Just ask Juliet for a summary, she has several available by email including:
  • "Blessed Unrest", by Paul Hawken
  • "Fleeing Vesuvius", by FEASTA and LE
  • "No More Throwaway People", by Edgar S. Cahn
  • "Sacred Economics", by Charles Eisenstein
  • "The End of Money and the Future of Civilization", by Thomas H. Greco
  • "The Future of Money", by Bernard Lietaer
  • "We the People", by John Buck and Sharon Villines