Seven cats will work as ‘intern curators’ at a library in one of the world’s tallest towers to provide comfort to lonely readers who have been cooped up at home during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The feline officials will work at the library in the Tianjin Radio and Television Tower in the northern Chinese city of Tianjin next week.
Wang Yan, vice-general manager of Tianjin Tower, said: “On 24th August, the cats will officially assume their duties at the Western Shore Book House, a library with thousands of books.”
The cat librarians are from a variety of breeds, including Ragdoll, Exotic Shorthair and Chinchilla, and their average age is one year.
The archive is considered the city’s highest library and is located 257 metres (843 feet) above ground.
The library was unveiled on 18th January, but was forced to close a short time later due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
It has reopened as part of the city’s ‘Fragrance of Books’ project which was launched by Tianjin officials to encourage people to read more.
The project is popular with locals and offers books to borrow for free.
The library is also seen as a place where lonely people can seek solace during the epidemic, and the feline ‘intern curators’ will help to provide comfort to them.
The Tianjin Tower, at a height of 415.2 metres (1,362 feet), is the eighth tallest freestanding tower in the world.
The tower, primarily used for communication, was built in 1991 at a cost of 45 million USD (34 million GBP).
It is one of the world’s few towers built over a lake.
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