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Accessibility and Support

Disabled access

We offer services for people who have problems with sight or hearing, learning disabilities, or difficulty getting to the library.

Many resources are available at your local library. We can also order books from other libraries, and deliver them to you.

Library buildings

Most libraries are accessible by wheelchair. Some have limited disabled access. Find out more on our local library pages. Assistance dogs are welcome.

Each library has a computer with a large screen, large print keyboard and access to an on screen keyboard, screen magnifier and accessibility settings for the mouse.

Home library service

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

Resources for disabled people

Visually impaired

If you have a problem with your sight, we offer:

  • Large Print books
  • Audiobooks - CD and eAudio
  • Bookstart packs containing touch and feel books for young children
  • ClearVision books with Braille and printed text for children
  • audio described films on DVD or CD

All library computers have SuperNova magnifying and screen-reading software installed. Some libraries have larger, easy-to read Dolphin keyboards.

BexhillEastbourne and Hastings libraries have specialist visual impaired equipment including:

  • Eye-Pal SOLO- reads any text aloud giving you access to every book and newspaper in the library. You can also bring your own letters and reading material in to be read on the machine.
  • Prodigi machines- a text and visual magnifier. You can use this machine to enlarge personal photos, reference material, or books and magazines. It also reads text aloud.

You can get audiobooks by post from the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) library (this is a free service) and Calibre Audio Library (subscription free with a joining fee).

Hearing impaired

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

  • DVDs with subtitles
  • hearing loop system at some libraries
  • Bookstart packs containing baby sign books and touch and feel books.

Learning disabilities

We have special resources for people with learning disabilities that you can find and reserve online.

  • Bag Books storytelling kits – for families, carers and respite centres to use with severely disabled children, young people and adults.
  • Books Beyond Words picture books – stories in pictures to help people with learning and communication difficulties understand and cope with their own experiences. They include love and relationships, health, death and crime. We run groups for sharing these books at Seaford and Uckfield libraries.

Bus passes

You can get forms for bus passes for older and disabled people in libraries. Library staff can help you complete the older person’s application form. You need to bring a passport style photo with you and original documents.

Dyslexia support in libraries

Dyslexia is a learning difference that can affect the ability to read, write and spell.

East Sussex libraries are committed to providing support for:

  • parents and carers looking to aid the development of children with dyslexia
  • dyslexic parents and carers looking for books to share with small children
  • adults with dyslexia looking for ways to enjoy reading or develop their skills.

How we can help

We offer eBookseMagazines and eNewspapers which you may find easier to read if you have dyslexia.  We also have  eAudio books and books on CD if you prefer to listen.

You can find these useful resources in our libraries:

  • Books from dyslexia specialist Barrington Stoke for a range of ages.
  • Dyslexia friendly books - junior
  • Dyslexia friendly books - teens
  • Story CDs. Your child may enjoy just listening to a story.
  • eAudiobooks and ‘Read-Along’ eBooksif your child would like to follow the words on the pages as they listen.
  • Books for adults about dyslexia and other reading difficulties.
  • User friendly computer software in all libraries (Supernova) which enables users to change font size and colour.
  • ProDigi and Eye Pal Solo reading aids available in BexhillHastingsand Eastbourne These machines are for those who have difficulty with normal print. They have a text to speech function as well as tools to enlarge print and change font colour.