Services for visually impaired people

All Newcastle Libraries offer resources to people who are blind, partially sighted or have a visual impairment. City, Cruddas Park, Denton Burn, Fenham, Gosforth, High Heaton, Kenton and Newburn Libraries are now open.  Please check opening times  

You can browse audiobooks, large print and other stock for 30 minutes. Alternatively you can order through our Select & Collect service.


We have a large selection of e-Audiobooks available to download FREE from RBDigital 

If you need help to access the service please follow the simple guide on how to access, register and download the digital content


We have a large selection of e-Books available to download FREE from BorrowBox. The font size can be adjusted depending on the device you are using.

If you need help to access the service please follow the simple guide on how to access and download the digital content 

Large print books

All of our libraries have a selection of fiction and non-fiction books available for adults and children.


There are spoken work or talking books available for adults and children on CD, MP3 and Playaway.

Reading Group

The VIP reading group is for people who are blind or partially sighted.  The group meet on the first Monday in the month at 1pm in City Library.  For further information please email or speak to a member of staff.

Computer facilities

City Library has a dedicated area on level  3 for use by visually impaired people or others with additional needs. The computer has specialist software and hardware to aid visually impaired people if required. A height adjustable desk provides computer access using screen reader software Supernova. A big keys keyboard, keyboard overlay and trackball are also available as well as an electronic book and document magnifier.

Supernova software

This is magnifying and reading software for use with Windows applications, the internet and email. It recognises and reads text and graphics including icons, buttons and menus. It can magnify the computer display up to 32 times in a choice of styles. It can also control colour, contrast and brightness to suit individual needs.

Large keyboard

This keyboard has a large simple layout that is easy to see, read and press. The keys are 4 times normal size and the black lettering is 10 times as big on a standard keyboard. It can also be used with a keyboard overlay. This has rounded holes to guide fingers to the correct keys whilst providing support to the rest of the hand.


Trackballs are useful for people who find a mouse difficult or painful to use.

Electronic book and document magnifier

Available to increase size of print.

Home delivery service

The service is available to anyone living in Newcastle who is unable to visit their local library due to either permanent or temporary ill health or has a permanent disability.

To apply please email Kenton Library at 

British Wireless for the Blind Fund

Newcastle Libraries is an agent for the BWBF who provide high quality, easy to use audio equipment which has been specially designed and adapted for listeners living with sight loss. Equipment is available on free loan to blind and partially sighted people who meet the following criteria:

  • resident in the UK
  • registered blind or partially sighted
  • over the age of 8
  • in receipt of a means tested benefit

For further information email

Other organisations offering help and support

Calibre Audio Library
Tel: 01296 432339

ClearVision (Children’s Braille Library)
Tel: 0208 7899575

Newcastle Vision Support formerly Newcastle Society for Blind People
Tel: 0191 2327292                                                                           

Reading Sight 

RNIB (Royal National Institute for the Blind)
Tel: 0303 1239999

Sight Service
Tel: 0191 4785959

Talking News Federation
Tel: 01793 497555

Talking Newspapers
Tel: 0303 1239999 


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