Library services for people with disabilities

What does it do?

We offer library services to people who cannot easily use a library due to disability, frailty, or because they are caring for someone who cannot be left. Resources include large print and talking books, subtitled videos and DVDs, and a home library service delivered by volunteers, available from your local library.

Who it is for?

People who are frail, disabled or carers

Where it is available?

Local service (Eastbourne, Hastings, Lewes, Wealden, Rother).

How to access or apply for it:

Disabled access to libraries
Most of our libraries are accessible by wheelchair. Some have limited disabled access – for details see each library's web page. Assistance dogs are welcome.

Library computers

Each library has a computer with a large screen, keyboard and trackball which you can use free of charge.
All our computers have accessibility software to magnify text, read information on screen aloud and write letters and save them as MP3 audio files.

Home library service
We run a free home library service for people cannot easily use a library due to disability, frailty or because they are caring for someone who cannot be left.

In some cases a librarian will visit you at home to discuss your needs. A volunteer will then be selected to choose books and bring them to you. Alternatively, someone from a voluntary agency will provide help.

For people with a hearing impairment
If you have a problem with your hearing, we offer:

DVDs with subtitles – most DVDs include subtitles in several languages
hearing loop system at some libraries
fax machines

For people with a visual impairment
If you have a problem with your sight, we offer:

large print books
audio cassette, CDs and MP3s of books, information and music
Booktouch packs – free touch and feel books for young children which you can request from our Bookstart Co-ordinator – read more about Booktouch.
ClearVision books for children – books with Braille and printed text
audio described films on DVD – some DVDs include audio description (AD) providing spoken details of key visual elements, such as locations, facial expressions and clothing
audio described films on CD – just the soundtrack of a film, no pictures, with a description about what is happening in the scene. These films can be played in a CD player.
Talking Book Service – CDs and a player are provided by the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB). Ask for a catalogue at your local library. Select your favourite authors and subjects from the list and we will send the talking books to your nearest library in packages of two or three stories at a time, for you or a volunteer to collect. Please note there is currently a waiting list for the RNIB talking book service. You can get an application form at any library, or from our Sensory Impairment team.

East Sussex E-library
You can find and reserve our books and talking books using our E-library online catalogue. DVDs can be reserved after they are three-months-old.
Please note – titles kept at the Equal Access library appear on our E-library, but the individual copies are not listed and can't be reserved online. Please ask staff at your local library if you want to reserve them.


Info last updated:

C18G, County Hall, St Anne's Crescent, Lewes, East Sussex, BN7 1UE