Library services for under fives

While all our libraries are closed due to the COVID-19 outbreak, we are running our service in a variety of different ways.

You will not be charged fines for any outstanding loans for the period of the closure of library buildings.

Activities and Events for under-fives

Library Services for Under Fives

As we are unable to run our programme of activities and events for under-fives in libraries at the moment, we have a range of online activities and events available on our YouTube Channel

Library Resources for under-fives

To borrow resources from Barnet Libraries, you will need a library card. If you are not already a member, you can join the library online and become a member straight away.

From 22 June 2020 you can request items through our new Select and Collect service from Chipping Barnet, Colindale, Edgware and Finchley Church End Libraries. We will put together a collection of suitable books for your child, which you will be able to collect and keep for up to six weeks.

We have increased our stock of eBooks and eAudiobooks suitable for young children and these are available for you to borrow.


Bookstart is a national scheme bringing books and small children together. More details can be found on the Bookstart website.

Baby Bookstart Packs

Every baby born to a family who live in Barnet is entitled to a free Baby Bookstart pack.


Baby Bookstart Pack


Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Baby Bookstart packs were distributed by health visitors or nursery nurses working in baby clinics. Packs could also be collected from your local library. We hope to revert to this method of distribution as soon as it is safe and practical to do so. In the meantime, we are offering you the opportunity to arrange to collect a pack from one of our four Select and Collect libraries. These are:

To arrange your collection please email with the following information;

  • Your name
  • Your baby's first name
  • Your baby's date of birth
  • Your contact telephone number
  • The name of the library you wish to collect your pack from

It will be several days before your pack is available for collection. This is because we have to follow government guidelines and quarantine your pack so that it is safe for you to collect. We will contact you to arrange collection.

Please do not come to the library until you have arranged a collection date.
This is so that we can keep you and our staff safe by reducing contact and adhering to social distancing guidelines.

Our short videos Your Baby Bookstart Pack , Tips for reading to Newborn Babies and Rhymes for Newborn Babies will help you get started with your Bookstart pack.

You may want to think about arranging a Select and Collect collection of books for your baby at the same time. We can put together a lovely collection of board books suitable for your baby.


Board Books


Bookstart Treasure Packs

Treasure packs are normally distributed by pre-school settings and nursery classes. We are currently looking at ways we can get your treasure pack to you at a time when settings are either closed or unable to participate in the distribution. Please check back to see if this section has been updated.

Special Bookstart Packs are available for children with additional needs

Please contact if you have a child who is deaf, has a visual impairment or has disabilities which impact on or delay the development of their fine motor skills.

Nurseries, pre-schools and schools

Our specialist early years team normally offer a rhyme and story based activity service to nurseries, pre-schools and schools in Barnet. This is a professionally delivered service and charges do apply. At present we are unable to offer this service but please check our online events to see if there is something useful.


Our specialist early years team normally runs training courses for teachers, early years practitioners and library staff. This service is currently suspended, but please feel free to contact us to ask any questions at


Early Years and Bookstart Coordinator

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