Reading Friends is a national, evidence-based programme, adapted to local needs and communities. It is a reading befriending programme developed by The Reading Agency, delivered in partnership with community organisations, including libraries.
Reading Friends connects people experiencing loneliness and isolation by starting conversations through reading, providing opportunities to meet others, share stories, make new friends, and have fun. It creates social connections and takes a person-centred approach, building on interests and hobbies to get people talking. It is the power of shared stories to spark conversations in groups and one-to-ones, working together with local community organisations and volunteers of all ages to build social connections.
Reading Friends at Surrey libraries
Surrey Libraries is now part of The Reading Agency's Reading Friends programme. We are very pleased to confirm that there are now Reading Friends groups available at the following Surrey libraries:
- Egham Library: Chat and Craft Reading Friends Group, every Tuesday (during term time) from 10am until 12 noon.
- Epsom Library: Reading Friends Book and Talking Book Group. Thursdays at 4pm. For meeting dates and times, please see the Epsom Library events and activities webpage.
- Farnham Library: Non-Fiction Friday Reading Friends Group, first Friday of every month, 10.30am until 11.30am.
- Godalming Library: Godalming Library Reading Friends Poetry Group. For meeting dates and times, please see the Godalming Library events and activities webpage.
LGBTQ+ Reading Friends
Surrey Libraries, in partnership with The Reading Agency, will be hosting monthly Reading Friends groups at libraries in Horley and Guildford for members of the LGBTQ+ community to come together around a shared love of reading.
Run by LGBTQ+ members of staff, the groups will have discussions and recommendations on a different subject each month. They will always be confidential, supportive, and positive spaces.
Starting from October 2023, LGBTQ Reading Friends group will meet at:
- Guildford library: on the first Saturday of the month, from 10am to 11.30am.
- Horley library: on the first Saturday of the month, from 2.30pm to 4pm.
Interested in joining a Reading Friends group?
You can express an interest in joining one of the above groups by completing our online application form.
Alternatively, all established Reading Friends groups can be found on the Reading Friends webpage, Find Reading Friends near you. Just add your postcode and click GO to show on the map your nearest group.