National Coding Week 2020

14 – 20 September 2020

National Coding Week is a volunteer-led organisation founded in 2014. It aims to help build people’s confidence and skills by encouraging volunteers to run fun and engaging digital events.

Code Club was founded in 2012 to assist children with learning coding skills with free after school clubs. In these clubs children learn to create games, animations, and web pages using Scratch, Python, or HTML/CSS.

Many of our libraries (normally) host a range of code clubs – some even host multiple ones! As we continue to follow government guidelines, we have yet been able to start them up again in our libraries, but we have been running code club over on our Facebook page sense April! Why not check it out?
We started with Scratch, and are now working on Micro:bits – did you know you can borrow Micro:bits from your local library?

We may not be able to do taster sessions in our libraries this National Coding Week, but don’t despair! We will instead be bringing the taster sessions to you; right here on our blog!
So enjoy these videos, have a go at coding and, most importantly; have fun!

What are the different coding programs?

A closer look at Scratch

A closer look at Micro:bits

Taster session – a special Coding week project

If you want books about coding, there are plenty available in our libraries. You can reserve them, for a small charge, ask for them with your Ready Reads or pick some up next time you are visiting the library! They are a great read for any young coder to get ideas, tips and inspiration for their future projects. Or for parents or carers who would like to be able to help their children on their coding journey.

Start your coding journey today!

Family History Month

October 2019

Do you know much about where you come from? Or who your ancestors were? Family History Month encourages us to find out about our past and with Hampshire Libraries you can start that journey, and for free!

Digital Resources – Find My Past

Using a Hampshire Library computer, which is completely free, you can access the family history online resource ‘Find My Past’. All you need to log onto a library computer is your library card number and PIN.

Hampshire Libraries Booklist

Who do you think you are? : encyclopedia of genealogy : the definitive guide to tracing your family history
by Nick Barratt

From the makers of the award-winning BBC series & Nick Barratt, the UK’s leading authority on family history, comes the definitive guide to researching your family’s roots & bringing your family history to life. Containing all you need to know whether you’re a beginner or more experienced researcher.

Tracing your ancestors in the National Archives
by Amanda Bevan

This guide continues to offer one of the best ways to explore people in the past through the holdings of The National Archives at Kew and the Family Records Centre in Islington. Aimed at researchers on all levels, this book fully explains the institution, the records and how to use them most effectively.

Common people: the history of an English family
by Alison Light

Beginning with her grandparents, Alison Light moves between the present and the past, in an extraordinary series of journeys over two centuries, across Britain and beyond. Epic in scope and deep in feeling, ‘Common People’ is a family history but also a new kind of public history, following the lives of the migrants who travelled the country looking for work. Original and eloquent, it is a timely rethinking of who the English were – but ultimately it reflects on history itself, and on our constant need to know who went before us and what we owe them.

Famous family trees
Written by Kari Hauge and illustrated by Vivien Mildenberger
Children’s information book: 7 – 9 years

This title features a compendium of family trees featuring some of history’s most loved – and loathed – famous faces from history for the whole family to explore.

A dictionary of family history: the genealogists’ ABC
by Jonathan Scott

Part encyclopedia, part dictionary, part almanac. There are definitions, timelines and terminologies, details of archives and websites as well as advice on research methods and explanations of genealogical peculiarities and puzzles that would test the knowledge of even veteran researchers. Longer entries explaining the mechanics of the first census and other major sources and records rub shoulders with simple one-line definitions of obscure terms, useful addresses and signposts to little-known but rewarding corners of family, local and social history. This concise, clear and wide-ranging compendium of helpful, sometimes surprising information is a valuable reference tool for everyone in the field.

Tracing your family history on the Internet: a guide for family historians
by Chris Paton

The Internet is revolutionizing family history research. Never before has it been so easy to research family history and to gain a better understanding of who we are and where we came from. But, as Chris Paton demonstrates in this practical guide, while the Internet is an enormous asset, it is also something to be wary of.

Family history: digging deeper
by Simon Fowler

This addition to any family historian’s library will take their research to the next level with clear advice and explanation of the processes involved from a crack team of Britain’s top genealogists. It also provides much information about the way in which our ancestors used to live and how this knowledge can help the researcher.

Tracing your ancestors’ lives: a guide to social history for family historians
by Barbara J. Starmans

Tracing Your Ancestors’ Lives’ is not a comprehensive study of social history but instead an exploration of the various aspects of social history of particular interest to the family historian. It has been written to help researchers to go beyond the names, dates and places in their pedigree back to the time when their ancestors lived.

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October 2019 say: “Breast Cancer Awareness Month is a worldwide annual campaign taking place in October, involving thousands of  organisations, to highlight the importance of breast awareness, education and research. 

During Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Breast Cancer Now aim to get as many people as possible involved in raising awareness and funds to help support our life-saving research and life-changing support. 

As the UK’s largest breast cancer research charity, along with our supporters, they do this through campaigning, raising money, an array of events across the UK as well as, of course, wearing it pink with all of you!”

Cancer Research UK statistics:

-There are around 55,200 new breast cancer cases in the UK every year, that’s around 150 every day (2014-2016). 

-Breast cancer is the most common cancer in the UK, accounting for 15% of all new cancer cases (2016). 

-In females in the UK, breast cancer is the most common cancer, with around 54,500 new cases in 2016. 

-In males in the UK, breast cancer is not among the 20 most common cancers, with around 360 new cases in 2016.” 

Hampshire Libraries Booklist

1. One Step at a Time : Getting Through Chemotherapy with Breast Cancer / Dr Alison Bailey

Written by patients to help others learn from their experiences. “I was first drawn to working in oncology while I was a student nurse at St Thomas’ Hospital in London. There I met a woman who had been diagnosed with breast cancer and showed such strength and fortitude in the face of her diagnosis that it left a strong impression on me.”She said that, despite all the information that had been provided by the professionals and the internet, she would love to be able to dip in and out of a book that had useful advice for newly diagnosed patients, based on the experiences of other patients. The idea for this book was born.

2. Dear cancer, love Victoria : a mum’s diary of hope / Victoria Derbyshire.

Renowned as a much-loved and highly respected BBC journalist, Victoria Derbyshire has spent 20 years finding the human story behind the headlines. In 2015 she found herself at the heart of the news, with a devastating breast cancer diagnosis. With honesty and openness, she decided to live out her treatment and recovery in the spotlight in a series of video diaries that encouraged thousands to seek diagnosis and help. Victoria has kept a diary since she was nine years old and in ‘Dear Cancer, Love Victoria’ she shares her day to day experiences of life following her diagnosis and coming to terms with a future that wasn’t planned.

3. The complete guide to breast cancer : how to feel empowered and take control / Professor Trisha Greenhalgh and Dr Liz O’Riordan.

Professor Trisha Greenhalgh, an academic GP, and Dr Liz O’Riordan, a Consultant Breast Cancer Surgeon, are not only outstanding doctors, but they have also experienced breast cancer first-hand. This book brings together all the knowledge they have gathered as patients and as doctors to give you and your family a trusted, thorough and up-to-date source of information.

4. A funny thing happened on the way to chemo : a rather unusual memoir / Ileana von Hirsch.

Ileana von Hirsch started writing a journal as a way to entertain herself and a few friends while dealing with breast cancer. But she soon realised that what she was going through was not only lifting herself up, but was making her friends and fellow patients laugh too. This is the no-nonsense down-to-earth book
that every cancer patient and relative ought to read.

5. The C-word : just your average 28-year-old … friends, family, Facebook, cancer / Lisa Lynch.

The last thing Lisa Lynch expected to cross off her ‘things to do before you’re 30’ list was beating breast cancer, but that’s what happened. So with her life on hold, blogging about dealing with cancer became an outlet that helped her to cope and keep friends and family updated. This is her story.

6. Breast cancer / Saunders & Jassal.

This volume provides essential, easy to follow information on all aspects of the diagnosis and management of breast cancer. It provides essential background information on the disease, from the ways breast problems are investigated, through treatment options and new therapies, to follow-up processes after remission. Fully updated to cover new and emerging therapies in breast cancer, this second edition also features new chapters on treating special or unusual types of breast cancer; surviving and thriving post-treatment; and coping and support strategies for the partners, families, friends, and colleagues of the person diagnosed with breast cancer. Each chapter is enriched with resources such as websites, links to videos, and care plans so the reader can explore relevant topics in greater detail.

7. The Essential Guide to Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women in the UK. This book is for women and their families who are looking for a comprehensive but plain language guide to breast cancer and its treatments.

National Coding Week

16 – 22 September 2019

“National Coding Week is a volunteer-led organisation founded in 2014. It aims to help build people’s confidence and skills by encouraging volunteers to run fun and engaging digital events.”

Code Club was founded in 2012 to assist children with learning coding skills with free after school clubs. In these clubs children learn to create games, animations, and web pages using Scratch, Python, or HTML/CSS.

Code Clubs in Libraries

Did you know most Hampshire libraries hold their own Code Clubs for your children? These are fun sessions for children to create their own interactive games and animations. It is also a fantastic opportunity to meet other children of a similar age and learn new skills. To find out where and when sessions are held near you, pop into your local library or send them a message through their Facebook page.

What Code Club books are available in Hampshires libraries?

If you want Books about Coding, there are plenty available on the library catalogue.

Coding in Scratch for Beginners – Rachel Ziter, An Unofficial Guide to Coding with Minecraft – Avaro Scrivano, Webpage Design – Clive Gifford


Have you heard of a Micro:bit? These are pocket size computers that you can borrow from your library for free! If you would like to give it a try, have a look where you can borrow a Micro:bit from.

Volunteering at Code Club

Would you like to volunteer to help at a Code Club at your local library? Our code clubs have proven very popular and we’re thrilled to be able to offer these sessions to children, something that wouldn’t be possible without our lovely volunteers. We’re always looking for more volunteers; volunteers who know one or more coding program, who like working with children and who are not only friendly, but patient too. If this sounds like you, why not volunteer with Code Club by heading over to this website?

We spoke to one of our Code Club volunteers and this is what they had to say:

  • What do you find rewarding about volunteering for code club?

I like sharing my enthusiasm for computing with the younger generation – basically its an excuse to be a kid again and have fun ! 

  • What made you want to volunteer in the first place?

Initially to encourage my own two daughters to get into coding but after starting as a volunteer and getting to know the children that attended I began to feel a real sense of guardianship and responsibility towards their own coding journeys . Their progress encourages you to share with them the knowledge that will help them reach the next level (without losing too many lives or turtles 🐢 !) The code club curiosity door is always open – try it and see what happens! 

  • Why should others volunteer?

A sense of community, the feel good factor ! It’s sociable and there is never a dull moment as the children get to know you and each other and can share jokes and take part in healthy competition !

  • What have you learnt since starting their volunteering?

How to run the coding club in a style that suits us as volunteers (plays towards our strengths) and how to use the tools and projects provided by the code club organisation. I have learnt also that there are some great kids in Totton who are funny and smart and I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to teach them a bit about coding 🙂 

Ringwood Library Code Club donation

Ringwood Library were recently given an extremely generous donation towards their Code Club. Here’s what they had to say: “We are absolutely delighted that the Rotary Club of Ringwood very kindly donated a significant sum of money to enable us to purchase our own Code Club computers. Members of the Rotary Club and our Mayor Tony Ring visited us to see the new computers in use by our keen, young coders. It gave us an opportunity to say a massive ‘Thank You’ to them for their incredible support”.

World Alzheimer’s Month

World Alzheimer’s month is held annually in September.

The aim is to raise awareness of the disease and in doing so, help people to understand what life is like for someone living with or those caring for someone with Alzheimer’s and Dementia.

According to Alzheimer’s Disease International: “2 out of every 3 people globally believe there is little or no understanding of Dementia in their country”. This campaign aims to change that statistic.

Alzheimer’s is a condition where the person’s brain function declines which can include memory, thinking and other mental abilities.

Alzheimer’s Research UK. Source: Dementia fact sheet December 2017; World Health Organisation

In Hampshire Libraries we want to raise awareness by staff attending specific training sessions and many have now become Dementia Friends. They can be identified by the Dementia Friends badge.

Reminiscence collection

Hampshire Libraries holds a Reminiscence Collection which are items that have been chosen to stimulate and support reminiscence and may be of particular use to carers working with people with dementia.

Memory Joggers 1940 – 1989 Entertainers – Barbara & Robin Dynes, I can remember the 1970s – Sally Hewitt, Having Fun in Grandma’s Day – Faye Gardner

Other books available to borrow

Hampshire Libraries hold books that explain about Alzheimer’s and Dementia and some are from the perspective of those suffering or caring for those with the disease. Find those books here: Books about Alzheimer’s & Dementia

There also a special collection of books called ‘Pictures to Share‘ which are fantastic books that help those with Alzheimer’s and Dementia bring back memories and to look at images that are part of daily life.

Family Life, At the Seaside, Shopping – Pictures to share Community interest company, edited by Helen Bate

Home Library Service

If you can’t get to the library due to ill-health, disability or caring responsibilities the library can come to you.

We can arrange for you to have your library books delivered to your home on a regular basis.

We offer books in standard and large print and also have a wide range of audio books in different formats. If you would like to borrow a particular title from Hampshire’s stock, we can get it for you.

This service is free.

How it works

Ask about the service at your local library, fill in the Library Service form or call HantsDirect on 0300 555 1387. After you have completed the enquiry form we will contact you by phone or email to assess your eligibility.

We deliver the service through our team of volunteers.

We will match you with someone and make them aware of what you like to read. They will visit you and exchange the items you have borrowed usually at least once every 4 weeks.

Volunteering for the Home Library Service

Or if you would like to become a volunteer who delivers and collects books, then please find out more information and apply here: Home Library Service Volunteering information

Other information

Some of our Hampshire Libraries hold Dementia Events and Drop Ins where you can receive advice and those who have Alzheimer’s and Dementia can attend a group.

You can also receive help and information through the Hampshire website by visiting the Adult Social Care Support page.

Libraries are a safe space and there are so many ways in which they can support and enhance the life of a person diagnosed and their carers.