Live Smart for a Healthy Heart

Celebrating Heart Health Month!

Coronary Heart Disease (CHD) is the UK’s single biggest killer.

The British Heart Foundation has been pursuing the ‘fight for every heartbeat’ for over 50 years, conducting leading research and using the findings to help understand this often silent killer. This year the British Heart Foundation are focusing on the impact lifestyle changes can make in preventing and managing heart disease, and are sharing this information during Heart Health Month!

How to achieve a heart-healthy lifestyle?

Eat Well:

Eating a healthy, balanced diet can help keep hearts healthy. A low fat, high fibre diet is recommended, including lots of fresh fruit and vegetables. Steering away from foods high in sugar is important in maintaining balanced blood sugar levels which impact the workings of the heart.

Stay Active:

Combining a healthy diet with regular exercise is the best way to maintain a healthy weight, which in turn reduces the risk to heart health. Regular exercise will make hearts stronger, blood circulation more efficient and keep blood pressure at a steady level. Any aerobic exercise, such as swimming, walking, dancing, makes your heart work harder and keeps it healthy.

Brighton and Hove City Council’s Healthwalks scheme is a great way to be more active! There are 18 different walks across the city, led by a trained volunteer walk leader and are completely free to join! Healthwalks are friendly, supportive and ideal for those wanting to start exercising in a gentle and safe way. Click here for more information.

Stop Smoking:

Smoking is a major risk factor in decreasing heart health. Smokers are up to 6 times more likely to suffer heart attacks. Giving up will significantly reduce your risk of developing CHD.

For help to stop smoking, take a browse at our health section for information and support services available in Brighton and Hove. The NHS website is also a great source of information and advice on how to quit,

Keeping hearts healthy, whatever age we are, is the most important thing we can do to help prevent and manage heart disease. Small changes to our lifestyles can have a huge impact on our hearts. By making healthier life choices, such as staying active and eating well, the risk of heart disease decreases rapidly. So let’s give our hearts some love!

Brighton and Hove libraries have lots of titles to help you in your journey to achieving a heart-healthy lifestyle. Take a look at our catalogue here and also our online resources, where you have free access to the latest health, food, fitness, and cookery magazines!

Book inspiration… all available in our libraries! Search the catalogue


Online magazine inspiration… all available for free to Brighton and Hove library members! You can read from home, or on the go!


We can ALL make a difference by spreading the word on heart health in the community and encouraging a commitment to heart-healthy lifestyles. For more information, visit the NHS Choices and BHF websites.

MyLife is also a great website listing local organisations and services to support everyday living. It’s definitely worth a browse!

Thanks for reading!

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From Me to You

Workshop @ Jubilee Library – 1st February 2018

Can you remember the last time you wrote a letter? Not an email, a Facebook message, or a text, but a handwritten letter..? Well, there’s no better time than now to pick up a pen and paper and get writing for an amazing cause!

‘From Me to You’ is a London charity focusing on the positive impact receiving a letter can make to cancer patients across the UK. On Thursday 1st February they are coming to Brighton!

‘From Me to You’ will be hosting a writing workshop at Jubilee Library to celebrate World Cancer Day. The workshop will be running from 11am – 4pm and is a great opportunity to learn about the impact receiving a letter can make to a cancer patient’s day and a chance to get involved in this fabulous initiative!

Letter writers of all ages are welcome to join and write a letter, card or postcard, knowing they will be providing a sense of comfort and companionship to cancer suffers, helping them feel connected to others when they need it the most.

Let’s help ‘From Me to You’ meet their 100 letter target this World Cancer Day! Pop in to see them at Jubilee library on Thursday and put pen to paper, and make a cancer patient’s day just a little bit brighter!

If you are unable to attend the workshop, you can still donate a letter. Just send it to the following address, where it will then be distributed to a cancer patient: Donate a letter, c/o From Me to You, 14 Heathfield Gardens, Chiswick, London, W4 4JY.cancer day


Visit the ‘From Me to You’ website for more information

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Time to Talk

Time to Talk Day is an annual event, started by the Time to Change charity in 2014. It’s a growing movement challenging common stereotypes and discrimination surrounding mental illness. Despite mental health issues being so common in the UK, affecting 1 in 4, too many people feel ashamed, embarrassed, silenced and isolated.

This has to change. It’s time to change.


Time to Talk Day, taking place on the 1st of February, is a chance to start a conversation about mental health, with the hope that conversation continues. It encourages us all to feel able and more confident to discuss mental health freely, without fear and judgement. For many people, not being able to talk openly about their mental health can be one of the worst parts of their illness. Time to Talk is an opportunity to tackle the silence in the hope that stereotypes can be broken and relationships and support strengthened.2

Mental health is a subject that deserves better understanding and support. At Brighton and Hove libraries we recognise the importance of books and the role they have in increasing knowledge. For many, books are a great source of support, encouragement and advice.

Across all Brighton and Hove libraries we have a huge collection of titles covering mental health issues. These include both fiction and non-fiction titles, for children, teenagers and adults. They provide a source of awareness, knowledge and also act as self-help guides, supporting the self-management approach to mental health that is so often championed. You can check out our catalogue here,

We also hold a collection of Reading Well books, a group of titles which have been officially recommended by health professionals to assist in the treatment of different mental health conditions. For more information and suggested reading lists follow this link,


On Thursday 1st, Mind – the mental health charity – will be visiting Jubilee library. They will be in the library throughout the day, talking about mental health, local services and support available. Please come and say hello and get involved in the conversation!

Check out the Mind website for more information and to view a list of accessible services in Brighton and Hove,

Let’s get talking about mental health!4

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Men’s Health Awareness Month 2017

movember header

November is here and it’s time to focus on men’s health!

Many people now know November as ‘Movember’, a month in which people around the world are encouraged to grow a moustache over the next 30 days! The aim of this worldwide campaign, started in 2003, is to raise awareness of men’s health and to support projects addressing testicular and prostate cancer, men’s mental health, suicide prevention and lots more. The ultimate goal is for more men to live happier, healthier and longer lives!

November is a time to have an honest conversation about men’s health. Here are a few facts highlighting why it’s so important to cast a light on men’s mental and physical health, and encourage a change in attitude towards having open conversations and seeking help.

  • Middle aged men are twice more likely to have diabetes than women.
  • On average, one in five men die before the age of 65.
  • Men are far less likely to visit the doctor than women.
  • 75% of premature deaths from heart disease are male.
  • Four in five suicides are by men. Suicide is the biggest cause of death for men under 35.

Raising awareness is essential in encouraging a better understanding of men’s health. It has the ability to create lasting change by challenging common stereotypes, stigma and the silence that so often surrounds the issue.

Brighton and Hove libraries are excited to be involved this year! Whilst not all of us may be able to grow the perfect ‘tache to show our commitment, we are most definitely invested in spreading the word and raising awareness in the community!

We’ve created displays at Jubilee Library consisting of fiction and non-fiction stock, so come and check them out!



Also included are books from our Reading Well, Books on Prescription collection, titles which have been recommended by health professionals to assist in the treatment of health conditions. Just look out for the red BOP label. To view the Reading well catalogue and suggested reading list click here


All of our libraries across the city have a health information section, with leaflets and handbooks to browse. We also have plenty of books for you to take home and read which can be found on our catalogue

If you can’t grow a ‘tache, do not fear! There are still plenty of ways to get involved in raising awareness. Visit the official Movember charity website for some inspiration and make sure to use the hashtag #movember to show your support across social media!

Thanks for reading!

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Animal Agents : Top 10 Animal Books

young-vols-stamp1Today, we will look at some of the most rarely seen and fascinating animals known to man, the animal agents. Animal Agents live in many environments, but a place where you are certain to find them is Brighton and Hove Libraries. Let us begin my top 10 animal books.


10. The Terrible Tales of the Teenytinysaurs! By Gary Northfield

Image result for terrible tale of teeny tinyA very funny graphic novel about a group of dinosaurs (Dave, a tyrannosaurus) and their misadventures in prehistoric times. With tales such as the horn fairy and snot monsters, this is a hilariously enjoyable prehistoric book. Available from Brighton and Hove Libraries, this book is suitable for readers aged 6+. Link here


9. Apocalypse Bow Wow!/Apocalypse Miaow Miaow! By James Proimos III and James Proimos Jr

Image result for apocolypse bow wowA graphic novel duology following a group of dogs (and a cat) in a post-apocalyptic world lacking humans. As they search for twonkies and friends in this strange new world, will they be able survive? Suitable for readers aged 8+. Links here and here


8. Angry Animals by Nick Arnold and Tony De Saulles

Image result for angry animals nick arnoldAn instalment in the massively popular Horrible Science series, this particular volume presents some of the most dangerous and deadly animals known to man, such as lions, tigers, crocodiles, komodo dragons, sharks, piranhas, snakes, elephants, rhinos, wolves and bears as they compete in a competition to see which is the cruellest creature. If you like some fun and humour with your facts, this is the animal book for you. Suitable for readers aged 9+. Link here. Also check out Horrible Science Nasty Nature (link here) and Horrible Geography Handbooks Wild Animals for more fun facts about animals (link here).

7. Deadly Fact Books

Image result for deadly fact booksSpin-offs of the Deadly 60 TV Series, these factbooks cover various groups of animals such as reptiles and amphibians, mammals, insects and spiders and many more. If you want to know what are the deadliest animals in the world, this series is for you. Suitable for readers aged 8+. Link here.


6. Good Dog, Bad Dog- Double Identity

Image result for good dog bad dog double identityMcBoo and Bergman, the two greatest canine cops in all of Muttropolis, return in this adventure that has them investigating death threats and a bombing at a movie studio. Suitable for readers aged 7+. Link here



5. Martin Brown’s lesser spotted animals.

Image result for lessewr spotted animlas martinb rownMartin Brown, Illustrator of the Horrible histories books, has written his own book about obscure and unusual animals that you’ve probably never heard of. Suitable for readers aged 7+. Link here


4. National Geographic Kids Deadly Predators

Image result for national geogrpahic kids deadly predatorsNational Geographic discusses some of the deadliest animals on the planet, with photographs of predators with informative texts written to inspire, inform, and excite young readers. Suitable for readers aged 5+. Link here


3. Ricky Ricotta’s Mighty Robot Series

Image result for mighty robot rick ricottaFrom Dav Pilkey, creator of Captain Underpants, comes the story of a young boy mouse and his robot friend, as they fight giant monsters from across the solar system. Suitable for readers 6+. Link Here.



2. Superfrog! By Michael Foreman

Image result for Superfrog BookLittle Frank lives in Pond City, where life among the lilies couldn’t be better … during the day, that is. At night time the pond folk quiver in their slippery skins as slimy bug-eyed monsters emerge from the watery underworld. One night, their dastardly deeds go too far, and Little Frank decides enough is enough. Can he stop the creepy crooks once and for all? Suitable for readers aged 4+.

1. The Adventures of Dog Man: A Tale of Two Kitties

Image result for the adventures of dog manAnother book by Dav Pilkey, this follows the adventures of the Heroic Dog man as he has deal with both his archenemy Petey the Cat and a brand new kitten! Will he Succeed? Suitable for readers 6+. link here

So that’s it for my top 10 Animal Books. Thanks for reading, and see you next time!

Carlos, Young Volunteer, Brighton & Hove Libraries

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Brighton Pride 2017


Each year, for one weekend in August, our already unique and vibrant city gets brighter, louder and even more extraordinary than usual. This is of course, due to the annual LGBT Pride celebrations and as you are probably already aware, 2017’s extravaganza is fast approaching.

From Friday August 4th until Sunday August 6th this year, Brighton and Hove will host a catalogue of events for its Pride celebration. The official Parade will set off from Hove Lawns at 11am on Saturday morning, dancing its way through the busy streets of the city centre until it reaches Preston Park, ready for a spectacular party with performances from the Pet Shop Boys, Years and Years amongst countless others. Other huge festivities include the takeover of St James’s Street for the Pride Village party, a two day fundraising event full of food, music and entertainment. There was even a pride dog show last weekend, proving that there really is something for everyone!

For more information about the events of Pride weekend check out the official site

Wherever you happen to find yourself this weekend, the iconic rainbow colours of the pride flag will be hard to miss as visitors, residents, charities and local businesses in huge numbers get ready to take part and contribute. Brighton and Hove libraries are excited to get involved and have been working hard to decorate and showcase our impressive selection of LGBT stock. This collection spans across fiction, non-fiction, graphic novels, health… just look for a pink label on the spine. We also have a wide range of LGBT DVD titles to borrow too.

For inspiration, browse our colourful pride displays for new and recommended titles. If you’re looking for something in particular, it’s easy to search our catalogue or just ask a member of staff for help! J

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Animal Agents! Summer Reading Challenge 2017


Our Summer Reading Challenge takes place every year during the summer holidays. Saturday 15th July sees this year’s launch across Brighton & Hove Libraries.  Kids are encouraged to sign up at their local library to collect special prizes for reading – all for FREE.  Young readers are challenged to read six books of their choice over the course of the summer holidays.  The theme this year is Animal Agents – a whole host of clever creatures, ready to solve all kinds of crimes!  This band of furry, slippery and feathered friends is specially trained to use its skills and natural instincts to unravel mysteries – with a huge helping of fun along the way.

Animal Agents

There’s a website and an App to add to the fun too! Stories, fact books, audio books, graphic novels, poetry – they all count towards taking part. Pre-schoolers can also participate in their own mini-challenge.

Parents and carers love the challenge, not only is it free but they can see the difference the summer reading challenge makes to their children’s progress, preventing a ‘dip’ in reading during the school holidays.


‘This is such a brilliant scheme, encouraging my sometimes reluctant six year old boy to read and making my pre-reading 3 year old feel really excited about reading. Thank you.’


Last summer over 2400 children across the city took part in the challenge. Sign up from 15th July and get reading, then visit the website to keep a record of your challenge!


Further information

Be the first to know about Summer Reading Challenge events happening in your local library:

Visit the library website

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Reading Hack – make things happen!

Reading Hack is a programme led by young people who volunteer their time to make amazing things happen in libraries, gaining valuable skills and experience along the way.

If you’re aged 13 – 19 and interested in volunteering in libraries across the city then we want to hear from you! Give your time over the summer to help support younger children take part in the Summer Reading Challenge – whatever your skills and interests, there’s something for everyone.


To find out more about Reading Hack and our summer volunteering programme for young people, email


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Volunteer Week

Our wonderful volunteers enjoyed tea and cakes made by Library Officer Nick to celebrate Volunteer Week.

Annie and DianeOur volunteers help with a variety of tasks, putting books back on the shelves and keeping libraries tidy, creating displays and helping library users with self-service, to selecting and delivering books to people who can’t easily get out to a library. Our volunteers make a real difference in libraries, bringing their own skills and personal qualities to enhance the work that they do.Julie and volunteers

We also invited Alan from Casserole Club to join us, and heard about this great local project which matches volunteer cooks with diners who find it difficult to cook for themselves.


Casserole club and Vols


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Let’s Explore Outdoors: National Bookstart Week!

It’s June! The sun is shining! It’s National Bookstart Week!

The chosen book for this year is ‘Everybunny dance!’ written and illustrated by Emily Sandall.  A tale of a blossoming friendship between a warren of musical bunnies and a friendly fox… it’s sure to be a guaranteed hit with the little ones!  Pop into your local library to receive your free copy!

bunny dance


To celebrate this week we’ve organised lots of fun, free family events across Brighton and Hove libraries. Take a look at the schedule below.

times storyBookstart have been helping families enjoy reading together for the last 25 years. They recognise how important it is to share books, stories and rhymes with children as early as possible. Pop in to your local library to join in with the celebrations! We hope to see you soon!

Happy National Bookstart Week! Let’s get outdoors! Let’s get reading!


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Diabetes Awareness Week

Just as we predicted in our previous post, May was indeed a very busy month, and things aren’t slowing down!  There’s lots going on during June and next week we’re focusing on diabetes, in support of Diabetes Awareness Week.

Over three million people are living with diabetes in the UK. Despite this staggering statistic and the fact lots of us know about diabetes or have someone close to us diagnosed, many people aren’t getting help or support to effectively manage their condition.

This has to change.

This year the campaign’s focus is on KNOWLEDGE and its importance in helping FIGHT diabetes.

So there’s no better time to get involved in the national conversation about diabetes! It’s a great chance to share your knowledge or experiences with others on social media using the hashtags #knowdiabetes #fightdiabetes #diabetesweek

Raising awareness of the disease and how to manage it is essential to ensure people can live well with diabetes.

We have a wide variety of resources across our libraries focusing on diabetes, from information guides to recipe books, which you can check out here

After having a look through a few, we came across an extensive range of tempting recipes, some of which we just had to try out – for research purposes of course! Featured below are a handful of cookbooks containing countless healthy, nutritious and balanced meals… and if you need any more convincing, see how yummy they look too!

 The Essential Diabetes Cookbook: which you can find at Hove, Jubilee, Saltdean, Coldean and Rottingdean libraries

essential diabetes





Everything You Need to Know about Diabetes Cookbook: Available to loan from Hove, Jubilee and Hangleton libraries

everything you need

Quick Cooking for Diabetes: Which you can find at Coldean, Hangleton and Jubilee

quick cooking

Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes Cookbook: At Jubilee library

type 1 and type 2

You can find more recipes online at the diabetes UK website

We also have eBooks available on our online catalogue We’ve recently added a new feature, meaning you can read offline – perfect for when you’re on the move or run out of data. Ask in your local library to find out more.

For further information on Diabetes visit the Diabetes UK website and share your knowledge on the forum

To search local services and groups in Brighton and Hove click here


Thanks for reading!





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