Your free newspapers from Hampshire Libraries

The PressDisplay app is becoming PressReader – and it’s getting better too.

Members of Hampshire Libraries can download the PressReader app or use a library pc in a Hampshire Library or Discovery Centre – free. This gives access to thousands of newspapers and magazines from around the world – all free.

Read newspapers securely online, anytime, anywhere.

Log into the PressReader website through a browser on any device, using your library card number, to activate 3 days of complementary access to browse or read newspapers online. You can download newspapers when connected to the wifi in any Hampshire Library Branch.

Download newspapers to read offline anytime, anywhere.

Add an email address and password to your account once logged into the PressReader website, then use this sign into the PressReader app on any mobile device to have 3 days of complementary access to download and read offline remotely.

Activate complementary access every 3 days, anywhere.

At the end of the 3 days, simply enter your library card number again to re-activate your complementary access for another 3 days.

When you access the PressReader app using library WiFi, you will see a welcome, saying you are in a Hotspot where you can read and download for free (look for the green coffee cup):

Press Reader

You can select newspapers and magazines by country of origin:

You can select by newspapers and magazines by subject category:

You can select newspapers and magazines by language:

You can download newspapers and magazines and read anywhere:

Articles and pages can be printed and for many of the newspapers and magazines, you can listen to articles being narrated:

Check out PressReader now

Safer Internet Day 2018

Safer Internet Day 2018 will take place on Tuesday 6th February with the theme ‘Create, Connect and Share Respect: a better internet starts with you.’

Coordinated in the UK by the UK Safer Internet Centre the celebration sees hundreds of schools and organisations join together to raise awareness of online safety issues and run events and activities right across the UK.

Find out more and get involved! #SID2018

As a result of this collective action Safer Internet Day 2016 reached 2.8 million UK children and 2.5 million UK parents.

With over 60% of 13-17 year olds now having social media accounts, it’s important that these can be used safely, here are our top tips:

  1. All social media accounts will allow you to block other users. If anyone makes you feel uncomfortable, use your block button!
  2. Make sure you report anyone who is abusive or inappropriate so they can be removed from the site.
  3. Comments left on your pages can always be deleted, don’t be afraid to remove something if you don’t want it there.
  4. Take a look at your privacy settings and take a close look at who can see what parts of your profile, these can be modified to keep your information as private as you like.
  5. If you see posts that might indicate to you that another person is in danger, make sure you report them and let someone know.
  6. Never share your personal details, such as your home address, telephone number or bank information.
  7. Do not let peer pressure or what other people are doing on these sites convince you to do something you are not comfortable with. Talk it through with a friend, parent, or teacher if you’re not sure.
  8. What goes online stays online. Do not say anything or publish pictures that might later cause you or someone else embarrassment.
  9. Whenever you’re about to post something online, pause and just imagine someone in authority, someone you respect, reading that post or looking at that photo.  If that feels uncomfortable, don’t do it.
  10. Never share your passwords, you don’t want other people getting hold of your personal details or accounts. If you think your account has been hacked, then you can report this to the site.


February Half Term

Come and join us this half term, we have a lot of exciting activities taking place from storytelling parties to crafts and performances! Spaces are filling up fast so make sure to book yours!

Monday 12 February

Mad about snails at Bordon Library


Author, Sarah Lucas, will be reading from her book, Snail Trail and telling the story of how she and her family began to write – all because of a strange welcoming present when moving into a Hampshire village some 21 years ago. She will be bringing a few visitors with her in a tank, talk about the lifecycle of giant African Land Snails and sign copies of Snail Trail for any snail fans who turn up – for children aged 5 – 12

Cost: Free

Time: 10.30am

Tudor Day at Bordon Library

Come along to a free session with Woolmer Forest Heritage Society on Tudor and Medieval clothing and textile crafts for all ages, with no booking required. For further information please contact the library.

Cost: Free

Time: 11am to 1 pm

The Canterville Ghost at Gosport Discovery Centre

Be prepared for chills and chuckles with this one person show, an original stage adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s classic tale written especially for children and young families. Spooky goings-on and eerie incidents are terrifying the new inhabitants of Canterville Chase. Will the ghost of Sir Simon drive them away, or can the mischievous spirit finally be laid to rest? Suitable for Ages 5 and above.

Cost: £3 or £10 for a family of 4

Time: 4-5pm

Charlie’s Storytelling parties

Join children’s entertainer and actress Charlie Sanderson for 45 minutes of storytelling, singing, puppets and other surprises – suitable for children aged 3+.

Cost: £3.75 per child (Accompanying adult free)

Basingstoke Discovery Centre – session times available: 10.00am or 11.15am

Chineham Library – session times available: 1.45pm or 3.00pm

Tuesday 13 February

Dinosaur crafts at New Milton Library

Come along to the library and join in with lots of fun dinosaur crafts. No need to book, just turn up. Parent/carers to remain in the library.

Cost: Free

Time: 10 – 11am

A day at the zoo at Stubbington Library

Come with us on an exciting visit to the zoo! Learn all about descriptive words, rhyme and number facts from animals like the hysterical hyena and the humongous hippo! For ages 5 to 6 years.

Cost: Free


Space Mission at Stubbington Library

Learn all about the universe and everything in it! Stretch your skills to infinity and beyond! This alien inspired literacy workshop will help you to crack your creative writing! For ages 8 to 10 years.

Cost: Free


Wednesday 14 February

Charlie’s storytelling part at Chandler’s Ford Library

Join children’s entertainer and actress Charlie Sanderson for 45 minutes of storytelling, singing and other surprises – for children 3+

Cost: £3.75 (Accompanying adult free)

Session times: 10am or 11.15am

Superheroes and villains at Fareham Library

Funtastic, Supertastic stories and crafts. No need to book, Parents/carers to remain with their children during this event.

Cost: Free

Time: 10am – 12 noon

Thursday 15 February

We’re going on a bear hunt at Overton Library

Join Amanda from Merry-go-Round Storytelling for an interactive session based on this well-loved story – for children aged 2-6.

Cost: £3.75 (Accompanying adult free)

Time: 2pm

Chinese New Year craft activity at Leigh Park Library

Join Leigh Park Library for dragon and dog crafts from 10 am to 12 noon. Tickets are available in the library, suitable for ages 4-11.

Cost: Free

Time: 10am – 12 noon

Friday 16 February

Pirates Ahoy! at Gosport Discovery Centre

It’s pirate half term so put on your best pirate clothes and come and join us for some pirate fun! Hear pirate stories, make pirate things, follow the treasure trail and lots more. This event is particularly for Service Families but ALL aspiring pirates, their friends and families are welcome. Drop in any time during the day and stay as long as you like. For ages 4 to 11 years.

Cost: Free

Time: 10am – 4pm

Saturday 17 February

Fairytales gone bad at Gosport Discovery Centre

Join performance poet Joseph Coelho (as seen on CBeebies), National Poetry Day Ambassador, as he unravels familiar fairytales to create fresh contemporary classics in an enchanting performance for young and old alike.  Join our poetic storyteller as he unwinds the true stories behind the happily ever afters and discover they’re maybe not as charming as you remember! After the show there will be a chance to meet Joseph and purchase signed copies of his books, as well as talk about his work.

Cost: £3 or £10 for a family of 4

Time: 2 performances are available – 11am- 12 noon or 2 -3pm

Don’t forget we have lots more taking place over half term, click here to look at all our children and family events.

Pride in Hampshire for LGBT History Month!

February is LGBT History Month 2018, the UK’s 4th annual celebration of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender culture, the history of the gay rights and related civil rights movements.

The overall aim of LGBT History month is to promote equality and diversity for the benefit of the public. This is done by:

  • Increasing the visibility of LGBT people, their history, lives and their experiences in the curriculum and culture of educational and other institutions, and the wider community;
  • Raising awareness and advancing education on matters affecting the LGBT community;
  • Working to make educational and other institutions safe spaces for all LGBT communities; and
  • Promoting the welfare of LGBT people, by ensuring that the education system recognises and enables LGBT people to achieve their full potential, so they contribute fully to society and lead fulfilled lives, thus benefiting society as a whole.

Why not start by browsing our suggested 10 reads for LGBT Month! As always, let us know your reading experiences.

This year we will focus on ‘Geography: Mapping the World’, especially now that our friends in Australia will be able to enjoy same-sex weddings. LGBT History month provides the perfect time for Hampshire Pride, a festival to celebrate LGBT+ lifestyles across Hampshire and the social history of local LGBT campaigns, culture and personalities.

The month will see a range of events, talks, exhibitions and much more. Get involved and celebrate LGBT history month:

…and loads more! See Hampshire Pride’s ‘Dates for Your Diary’ for the complete details.

Whether it be attending a local event above, sharing the celebration through social media, viewing the annual LGBT History exhibition or taking part in a National Festival the choice is enormous! It’s never been easier to find out what your local community may be doing for LGBT month and getting involved!

At Hampshire Libraries we are particularly chuffed to welcome Zoe Lyons to Winchester Discovery Centre on Saturday 19th February at 8.00pm. Get your tickets while you can, there’s never been a better time to bring Zoe and her hilarious trademark high energy, brilliantly observed routines and sharply written material  to Hampshire!


Want to join the Pride Party? Come along to Winchester on Saturday 24th February and join the march through Winchester and then let loose with street and pride parties. Here’s the plan for the day:

13:00 Assembly at the Winchester School of Art
14.00 Embark on the Parade through Winchester city centre
15.00 Indoor Street Festival and Market stalls at Hampshire County Council’s EII Court
19.30 Evening party at the University of Winchester Student Union!

Hampshire Libraries and Registration Services will have market stalls at the Street Festival so we can’t wait to see you there! #PrideHampshireWide  #LGBTHM18

National Storytelling Week 2018

Join in with National Storytelling Week from 27 January until 3 February and celebrate the tradition that is storytelling!

You can be as creative as you like – take part in storytelling activities, make up stories, read stories from books or even act them out.

Make sure to join us for some great storytelling activities:

Storytime Sessions

Storytime sessions are for children and are kept age appropriate, make sure to check what age the session is for – e.g. under 5’s or for 2-7 year olds.


Chatterbooks are for children 8-12 years old, allowing them to discover new books, read and write reviews, find new authors and take part in quizzes, activities, crafts and lots more!

Reading Groups

Reading Groups are a friendly way to explore new books each month and share thoughts and ideas.


Rhymetime is sure to get everyone singing and moving through stories, actions, songs and rhythm!

VIP Reading Group

VIP Reading Group allows people who are visually impaired to come enjoy and relax at a reading group without having to worry about their sight loss. All titles chosen in the reading group are available in large print and audio.

You can also borrow books from any Hampshire Library branch or download eBooks and audiobooks using Overdrive.

All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

About the book

Marie-Laure has been blind since the age of six. Her father builds a perfect miniature of their Paris neighbourhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. But when the Nazis invade, father and daughter flee with a dangerous secret. Werner is a German orphan, destined to labour in the same mine that claimed his father’s life, until he discovers a knack for engineering. His talent wins him a place at a brutal military academy, but his way out of obscurity is built on suffering. At the same time, far away in a walled city by the sea, an old man discovers new worlds without ever setting foot outside his home. But all around him, impending danger closes in. Doerr’s combination of soaring imagination and meticulous observation is electric.

Reviewed by Fareham 5:30

Read this book! Read it now. It is wonderful – for many of us the best book we’ve read.
The descriptive writing is haunting. Each short chapter is so beautiful part of you wants to linger. The story is interesting, particularly how he weaves the tow key charcaters’ lives. The book is full of well-rounded characters that you care about.
The book provoked a good discussion on the morality and horrors of war – especially useful as seen from French and German perspectives.
This is a haunting story. We would definitely read all books by this author.

Star rating: *****

Read this book:

Request to borrow a reading group set

Cosy up with a good book!

There’s nothing better than snuggling up in bed or on the sofa wrapped up from the cold with a hot drink and a book! You may have the hot drink sorted but do you have the book? Well lucky for you we’ve got some great reads to see you through these cold and dismal days!

Under the Udala Trees, Chinelo Okparanta

One day in 1968, at the height of the Biafran civil war, Ijeoma’s father is killed and her world is transformed forever. Separated from her grief-stricken mother, she meets another young lost girl, Amina, and the two become inseparable. Theirs is a relationship that will shake the foundations of Ijeoma’s faith, test her resolve and flood her heart. In this masterful novel of faith, love and redemption, Okparanta takes us from Ijeoma’s childhood in war-torn Biafra, through the perils and pleasures of her blossoming sexuality, her wrong turns, and into the everyday sorrows and joys of marriage and motherhood.

Three daughters of Eve, Elif Shafak

On a spring evening in Istanbul, Peri is on her way to a dinner party – a night of luxury a far cry from her upbringing. But when her handbag is stolen her world shifts violently. She starts to doubt how she got here: a traumatic Istanbul childhood, student years in Oxford, the rebellious professor who led her and best friends Shirin and Mona to question everything – Islam, love, life, even God – and the scandal that tore them all apart. Over one desperate night she tries to make sense of a past she has tried to forget – but can we ever escape who we once were?

American Housewife, Helen Ellis

Meet the women of American Housewife. They smoke their eyes and paint their lips. They channel Beyoncé while doing household chores. They drown their sorrows with Chanel No. 5 and host book clubs where chardonnay trumps Charles Dickens. They redecorate. And they are quietly capable of kidnapping, breaking and entering, and murder. Vicious, fresh and darkly hilarious, American Housewife is a collection of stories for anyone who has ever wondered what really goes on behind the faades of the housewives of America.

How to stop time, Matt Haig

Tom Hazard has a dangerous secret. He may look like an ordinary 41-year-old, but he was born in 1581. Owing to a rare condition, he’s been alive for centuries. From Shakespeare’s England to jazz age Paris and voyaging the Pacific, Tom has seen a lot, and now craves an ordinary life. Always changing his identity to stay alive, Tom now has the perfect cover – working as a history teacher at a London school. Here, he can teach the kids about wars and witch hunts as if he’d never witnessed them first-hand. He can try to tame the past that is fast catching up with him. The only thing Tom mustn’t do is fall in love.

The Fishermen, Chigozie Obioma

Told from the point of view of 9-year-old Benjamin, the youngest of four brothers, ‘The Fishermen’ is the Cain and Abel-esque story of an unforgettable childhood in 1990s Nigeria. When their father has to travel to a distant city for work, the brothers take advantage of his extended absence to skip school and go fishing. At the forbidden nearby river they encounter a madman, who predicts that one of the brothers will kill another. What happens next is an almost mythic event whose impact – both tragic and redemptive – will transcend the lives and imaginations of both its characters and its readers.

Hold back the stars, Katie Khan

A few years from now, not too far in the future, two people meet.It is a classic story of boy meets girl.Except that it’s not.When we find them, they have an hour and a half left. Unless they can save themselves, they won’t survive.The clock is ticking.

Anatomy of a soldier, Harry Parker

Imagine if your whole life changed in the blink of an eye . . . Captain Tom Barnes is leading British troops into a war zone when he is gravely injured by an exploding IED. This devastating moment and the transformative months that follow are narrated here by forty-five objects, telling one unforgettable story.

A New Look for Totton Library

Totton Library is about to become the latest Hampshire Library branch to receive major improvements. From Monday 19th February, the branch temporarily closed for around two months as refurbishment gets underway and new technology is installed for customers.


The upgrades at the Library Road facility are part of a commitment made within the Library Strategy to reinvest £500,000 a year from the Book Fund until 2020 into library buildings and technology.

The Leader of Hampshire County Council, Councillor Roy Perry has approved plans for a major £362,000 refurbishment to modernise the branch, including self-service technology kiosks will be introduced for customers to quickly and easily borrow and return items. There will also be a new meeting room and a multi-functional community room to accommodate a broad range of activities, meetings and events. Refurbishment work will also include new carpets, double-glazed windows, walls, a new boiler and updated furniture.

The brand new self-service kiosks

Councillor Perry said: “These new and refurbished facilities will bring Totton Library right up to date – ensuring it is modern, vibrant and fit for the future.

“This work is another example of our investment in buildings and technology to meet the changing demands of library customers. We are keen to help minimise any short-term inconvenience during the temporary closure, so we will be putting steps in place to provide Totton library users with extended loan periods for their books and other items such as audiobooks, during this time. Library users will also have the option to use services online, such as access to e-magazines and e-books or from neighbouring libraries.”

Customers will be able to borrow a maximum of 30 books prior to 19th February and books will not be subject to fines or charges during the closure. The branch is due to reopen on Monday 21st May. In the meantime, local residents and regular visitors to Totton can continue to enjoy the library at Lyndhurst, Hythe, or any Hampshire Library Service branch.

With a free Hampshire Library card, readers can also continue to access the increasingly popular e-book and e-magazine service that is  available at





BBC Radio 2 – 500 Words Competition 2018

For the last seven years BBC Radio 2’s Chris Evans has been hosting the 500 Words Competition, a competition for children of all ages encouraging them to read and write. 500 Words is now one of the most successful story-writing competitions for children in the world: Three quarters of a million children have taken part and written a story for the competition over the last seven years.

Competition entries are now open until 7pm on Thursday 22 February. Children thinking of taking part in 500 Words will have to write an original story on any type of subject, or theme in 500 words or less and then submit it online. The winner of 500 Words will have their story read live on the radio by a celebrity!

Below are some resources to help you get started on your 500 Words!

Good luck to everyone taking part!

Health and Wellbeing

Research shows that libraries are trusted, neutral and non-judgemental places which seek to promote health support and public library staff are second only to doctors in terms of the trust placed upon them (SLC 2012).

At Hampshire Libraries we promote healthy lifestyles through providing up to date health information and sign posting resources like, activities and events such as yoga classes and photography courses.

We offer targeted resources through the Reading Well Scheme and When a Book May Help which supports people with overcoming a range of health and wellbeing issues. For people who cannot easily access Hampshire Libraries there are various schemes to help reduce social isolation; The Good Neighbour Scheme, Home Library Service and Library Clubs .

Below shows a strategy created that allows us to share and celebrate what we already do as a service, the strategy was linked to Hampshire’s Public Health ‘Towards a healthier Hampshire’.