Use this page to learn who can use the Library at Home, which services are available to you and how to access them.
Library at Home is for Bath & North East Somerset residents who aren't able to access their local library services for a number of reasons. We hope that the Library at Home service will help connect our residents to new friends and volunteers through a love of reading, making sure that our residents can access books, regardless of their situation.
We work with volunteers to make sure the Library at Home service runs smoothly. Volunteers deliver books, phone for a chat, select books for you, or stay for a chat as you work together to get to know one another and share your interests.
Library at Home services are for B&NES residents. The support can be short-term or long-term, depending on your needs.
The service is provided for people who are living in the following circumstances:
- you are living in sheltered housing, an adult residential or nursing home
- you are living with a long-term illness or disability
- you have a sensory impairment
- you have profound or severe learning difficulties
- you are suffering from poor mental health or social and cultural isolation
- you have a short-term need for help (for example, following an operation)
- you are a carer who is unable to leave the home for any length of time
Library at Home services
Reading has a very positive effect on health and wellbeing. We aim to enrich people's lives by giving them access to library services and offering friendly social contact with volunteers who love reading.
When you join the Home Library Service, you can enjoy the following benefits:
- Borrow up to 20 items at a time
- Enjoy talking books, hardbacks, paperbacks and large print books
- Borrow books and most other items for up to 6 weeks
The Home Library Service depends on volunteers and is limited by the numbers of volunteers who help us at any time. If you have family or friends who are able to assist you with library book ordering or collection, this enables us to continue to support other readers who do not have this kind of support.
Book Drop is for residents who are temporarily unable to get into their local library. Books will be selected individually for you. These are collected by a volunteer who then drop the books off at your front door every few weeks and take away your previous selection.
Reading Friends is a UK-wide social reading and befriending programme to help those who feel vulnerable, isolated or lonely. It connects people by starting conversations through reading. It is delivered by volunteers as a one-to-one phone call or virtual conversation. We also run group meetings in our core libraries.
Loan an iPad
If you are resident of Bath and North East Somerset and are part of the Reading Friends Service, you can now loan an iPad from Bath & North East Somerset Library Service.
The iPads can be loaned to Reading Friends participants who have internet access but do not have their own IT device. The iPads are supplied containing a selection of Apps to help inspire and facilitate conversation between Reading Friends participants, volunteers and befreinders.
How it works
iPads are loaned, free of charge, for six weeks and your befriender will deliver the iPad to your home
To borrow an iPad, you must:
- Be a participant of the Reading Friends service to borrow an iPad
- Be a full member of the Library Service (Email Reading_Friends@bathnes.gov.uk to join)
- Sign an iPad borrower request form and agree to the Terms and Conditions of use
Register your interest
To use join the Reading Friends service or apply to loan an iPad, please contact Reading Friends by emailing Reading_Friends@bathnes.gov.uk.
Apply to join
If you, or someone you know, would like to find out more about getting involved in the Home Library Service, Book Drop or Reading Friends, please contact us at HomeLibraryService@bathnes.gov.uk or Reading_Friends@Bathnes.gov.uk
Alternatively, you can call the Library and Information Service on 01225 39 40 41 or ask a friend or family member to ask about the scheme at your local library.
Become a volunteer
If you are interested in becoming a Home Library Service volunteer or befriender for Reading Friends, please visit our Library Volunteering page