Home library service

Information about the home library service in North Yorkshire.

We can select and deliver books, audiobooks, DVDs and information to the homes of people or families who find it difficult to get to their local library due to age, illness, a disability or if you are a carer. We also offer this free service to people who live in residential settings.

You can use the home library service on a temporary basis if you prefer, for example only in the winter or for short-term reasons such as being at home with a new baby or recovering from an operation.

Teams of volunteers deliver this service once a fortnight. Volunteers can either choose items for customers to suit their tastes, deliver them, or a bit of both. If you can get to the library but find it difficult to carry books, you can also choose the items you want to borrow in the library yourself and we will then deliver them.

If you would prefer a family member or friend to choose the items you would like to borrow on your behalf, or for them to collect items selected by our volunteers, please talk to your local library team about what suits you best.

Items that can be borrowed 

Most items you would borrow from a library can be delivered using the home library service, including:

  • books and audiobooks
  • DVDs
  • large print books
  • children's books
  • information

How the service works

After you let your local library know that you're interested in using this service, a volunteer or staff member will visit you at home and:

  • help you join the library if you are not already a member
  • find out what types of books you like or dislike
  • ask if you prefer ordinary print, large print or audiobooks 
  • create a detailed reader profile, which we will use to select books matching your interests

Books will be delivered to you fortnightly or monthly depending on your preference. You can keep the books as long as you need and there are no fines or overdue charges. You can also ask for specific titles or authors and we will do our best to provide the books you would like to borrow.

If you would like to help a friend or family member who struggles getting out to borrow books and other materials, please talk to the team at your local library.

Join the home library service

The easiest way to sign up for this service is to get in touch with your local library - contact details can be found on our local libraries page. Other ways to get in touch with the libraries service are listed on our contact us page.

Volunteer with the home library service

We are looking for volunteers who are interested in meeting people and making connections and love reading, to help pick out and deliver books and information to people using our home library service. You can be involved as much or as little as you like. See our library volunteers page for more details.

Hear from home library service customers

Home library service customer Cath Holden said: “It’s sad when a decrease in mobility or lack of means to get to a library takes away that pleasure of an hour spent browsing the shelves and coming home with a bagful of books. So when a friend who is a user of the home library service contacted them for me, suddenly a whole new world opened up – a fortnightly visit from a friendly volunteer who discussed my likes and dislikes. Now, less TV, more enjoyment of a good book!

Home library service customer Jo Holland said: “There are probably a lot of people who, especially in the winter, don’t go out. They don’t have to be a pensioner like me, they can be young and have a disability. If you love reading, it is a wonderful service.”