Library support for people with dementia and their carers

Woman with arm around elderly woman

Libraries are committed to supporting people living with dementia and their carers.

Why libraries? Libraries are seen as trusted, non-judgemental places in the community where people feel safe and welcome. This is vital for people living with dementia and those who care for them.

What does your local library have to offer?

All libraries in Derby have a welcoming atmosphere where everyone can feel safe. If you live, work or study in Derby you can join the library and it’s free. You’ll then be able to borrow:

  • books, including in large print
  • magazines
  • audiobooks

At all libraries we also have:

  • information books to borrow on dementia
  • information about organisations in Derby where you can get further support

If you prefer, you can just sit and relax in the library and have a look round at what we offer in your own time. Library staff are always happy to talk to you if you have any questions.

Playlists for Life

Derby Libraries are now registered help points for the music and dementia charity Playlist for life. Research shows that listening to a personalised playlist can improve the lives of those living with Dementia. In fact, listening to music that is personally meaningful has many psychological benefits, meaning anyone can benefit from a playlist that encourages their sense of well-being.

Personalised playlists can:

  • Reduce Anxiety
  • Evoke memories that can help carers and families connect
  • Improve mood
  • Make difficult tasks more manageable

Whether it’s the music from a first dance, lullabies from childhood or a theme tune from a favourite TV show, music can take us back in time and remind us of our past, giving you that flashback feeling. Sharing songs and memories can help people living with dementia connect with family, friends, and carers. Playlist for Life, 2022

You can now access free resources at Alvaston, Mickleover, Normanton and Riverside libraries including Get Started leaflets, Soundtrack of your life booklets and conversation starters- prompts to start building your personal playlist.

There is more information available on the Playlist for Life website, including links to Spotify playlists, BBC Music memories and 100 Years: A century of song a resource for music detectives of the top 100 songs every year from 1915 -2015.

The HLS can provide Playlist for Life resources to residential homes, supported housing carers and families. Please contact

Resources for reminiscence sessions

Our Home Library Service delivers collections of books to some sheltered housing schemes and care homes. We can also supply commercially produced reminiscence packs on a whole range of topics.

For further information about these packs, email or telephone 01332 640617.