Reminiscence collection

The Reminiscence collection is one of the many services provided by Surrey Libraries supporting people with Dementia. Please see our Dementia Support in Libraries webpage for more information and other services available.

This Reminiscence collection is designed for anyone in Surrey who is supporting someone with dementia or memory impairment, whether at home or in a care or group setting. The collection consists of a wide range of materials for use in reminiscence therapy, including books, DVDs, games, flashcards, activities, jigsaws, music and artefacts, all aimed at evoking memories and stimulating discussion and conversation.

Some materials have been gathered together into Themed Reminiscence Boxes. These boxes contain a selection of different items on a specific theme (such as wartime, family life and the seaside). They are designed to make it easier for you to choose a selection of items without having to go through the whole catalogue.

The Collection is kept at Woking Library. It is not on open access but can be viewed by appointment. To book an appointment email:

You can download the current edition of the Reminiscence Collection Catalogue (PDF).

How to register

Users of the Reminiscence Collection can have a designated Reminiscence Borrower library card that allows loans of up to 30 items for a period of 6 weeks. A Reminiscence Borrower can be an individual caring for a family member or friend at home, or a care worker or activity organiser working in a care home.

To obtain a Reminiscence Borrower library card, an individual or care worker must take the following identification to a Surrey library.

  • An individual will need proof of their home address, for example a driving licence or utility bill.
  • A care worker or activity organiser will need two items of identification, such as proof of home address (for example a driving licence or utility bill) and also workplace identification, which includes the work address, such as a badge or letterhead.

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How to borrow items

Registered users can borrow up to 30 items for a period of 6 weeks.

The service is free of charge to registered Reminiscence Borrowers. Reminiscence Collection items can be borrowed on a standard library card, but, in this case, normal reservation and overdue charges will apply.

All Reminiscence stock is on the Surrey libraries' catalogue and can be borrowed by reserving it in one of the following ways:

  • directly from the online version of the Reminiscence Collection Catalogue. Click on the item you want to reserve, and you will be taken to the Surrey libraries' catalogue entry, where you can reserve the item using your library card number and PIN.
  • if you have printed a copy of the Reminiscence Collection Catalogue from our website, you can browse and then reserve items by searching our online catalogue, by entering the title of the item. (You will need your library card number and PIN)
  • By emailing and asking for items to be reserved for you. Please quote your library card number and the item reference number, which appears to the right of each entry in the Reminiscence Collection catalogue.
  • By visiting your nearest Surrey library in person and speaking to a member of staff.

Items can be delivered and returned to a Surrey library of your choice.

For further information about the collection, ask at your nearest Surrey library or contact the Library Service via email at

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Files available to download

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