About Us

About Us


  • The New York Met Opera is releasing a recording from their archives every day.
  • Berlin Philharmonics' Digital Concert Hall
  • Playlist for Life - Playlist for Life is the UK’s leading music and dementia charity, and the website offers people with dementia (as well as carers, family, healthcare professionals, and community organisations) information and tips on all things related to personal playlists. The site provides information on how to find the right music, using playlists properly, how to listen to playlists (i.e. which technology to use), and also the benefits of using personal playlists in the daily care of someone with dementia.

Culture and Food


Animal Interest


  • The Enduring Gardener For any green-fingered gardeners out there, then you should read The Enduring Gardener, which features the gardening blog of Stephanie Donaldson.


  • Caron Cares  offers a great source of information for anyone caring for someone elderly or someone with dementia. It is useful for professional carers but more so for family caregivers who often find themselves “accidental carers” and have little or no idea what to do or what help is available.


  • Euan's Guide Euan’s Guide makes it easier for disabled people to find great places to go. The disabled access review website was founded in 2013 by Euan MacDonald, who is a powerchair user, and his sister Kiki. As Euan’s access requirements changed, both went in search of recommendations for accessible places to visit but a platform for this didn’t exist. Built as a friendly and honest alternative to hours of web searching and phone calls before visiting somewhere new, Euan’s Guide now has thousands of disabled access reviews and listings for places all over the UK and beyond.

Here is a number of frequently asked questions along with links below to the latest government and NHS advice

Questions covered

What is Coronavirus and what are the symptoms?

Coronavirus is a virus that causes an illness called COVID-19. It affects your lungs and airways. For most people, it causes mild symptoms while for others it can be more serious and require hospital treatment. The  Government is making lots of preparations to help contain coronavirus and daily briefings are now being held.

The symptoms are:

  • a cough
  • a high temperature
  • shortness of breath.  

These symptoms are similar to lots of other illnesses, like common colds and flu. If someone has these symptoms it doesn’t necessarily mean they have coronavirus. Though we do need to ensure that we limit the spread, anyone who has symptoms that could be coronavirus, however mild, needs to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for between 7 and 14 days. Read more.  


Who is at risk and what we can do? 

There are some people who must listen to the Government’s advice to self isolate and stay at home and avoid contact with other people, allowing only essential visitors in their home such as NHS staff or care workers to keep themselves safe. The Government is advising those who are at increased risk of severe illness from coronavirus (COVID-19) to be particularly stringent in following social distancing measures.

This group includes those who are:

  • aged 70 or older (regardless of medical conditions)
  • under 70 with an underlying health condition listed below (ie anyone instructed to get a flu jab as an adult each year on medical grounds):
    • chronic (long-term) respiratory diseases, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), emphysema or bronchitis
    • chronic heart disease, 
    • chronic kidney disease
    • chronic liver disease, such as hepatitis
    • chronic neurological conditions, such as Parkinson’s disease, motor neurone disease, multiple sclerosis (MS), a learning disability or cerebral palsy
    • diabetes
    • problems with your spleen – for example, sickle cell disease or if you have had your spleen removed
    • a weakened immune system as the result of conditions such as HIV and AIDS, or medicines such as steroid tablets or chemotherapy
    • being seriously overweight (a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or above)
  • those who are pregnant

For specific advice on medical conditions we have further information here.

As of  Monday 23 March 2020, the NHS will be getting in touch with anyone who they think might get seriously ill if they were to catch coronavirus. They’ll give specific advice for what to do. 

If you think you’re more at risk, make sure you’re following advice about social distancing and keep washing your hands regularly. You don’t need to call your doctor or NHS 111 – just wait to be contacted.


How can I reduce my risk of catching or spreading Coronavirus?

The Government is advising us all to do what we can to help stop the spread of coronavirus. This includes staying at home and avoiding social contact with other people – what’s known as ‘social distancing’.

This means you should:

  • avoid all unnecessary travel
  • only use public transport if you have to
  • work from home if you can
  • use phone and online services instead of face to face ones, wherever you can.

You should also make sure you wash your hands, frequently and thoroughly, with soap and hot water.

You should wash your hands:

  • for at least 20 seconds or for two rounds of the song ‘Happy Birthday’
  • when you get home after going out
  • before eating or handling food
  • after sneezing or blowing your nose.  
  • watch the hand washing video here

Try to avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. You should also make sure you catch coughs or sneezes with a tissue or your sleeve – not your hands – and put used tissues in the bin. 

There's advice from the Government on how to manage if you're staying at home and more information and tips on our site that can help. 


How long do I stay at home if I have symptoms? 

Anyone with symptoms should stay at home for at least 7 days.

If you live with older people, they should stay at home for at least 14 days, to avoid spreading the infection outside the home.

After 14 days, anyone you live with who does not have symptoms can return to their normal routine.

But, if anyone in your home gets symptoms, they should stay at home for 7 days form the day their symptoms start. Even if it means they're at home for longer than 14 days.


What is shielding? 

Shielding is a practice used to protect extremely vulnerable people from coming into contact with coronavirus. It is designed to ensure people who are clinically extremely vulnerable minimise all interaction between those who are extremely vulnerable and others.

The government will be sending letters to 1.5 million people in England urging them to self-isolate for an extended period. Health officials have urged those considered most at risk from the disease because of their health conditions to begin "shielding" themselves by staying at home. Letters will go out this week (22/03/2020) "strongly advising" people not to go out for at least 12 weeks from Monday.


If I am shielding what should I avoid?

The government advice states:

  • Strictly avoid contact with someone who is displaying symptoms of coronavirus. These symptoms include high temperature and/or new and continuous cough.
  • Do not leave your house
  • Do not attend any gatherings. This includes gatherings of friends and families in private spaces for example family homes, weddings and religious services.
  • Do not go out for shopping, leisure or travel and, when arranging food or medication deliveries, these should be left at the door to minimise contact.
  • Keep in touch using remote technology such as phone, internet, and social media.
  • Do use telephone or online services to contact your GP or other essential services


What should I do if I feel unwell?

Stay at home and for at least 7 days if you have a new, continuous cough or high temperature, even if you're feeling OK. 

Stay at home for at least 14 days if you live with other people and you or they develop a new, continuous cough or high temperature. Everyone in the household needs to stay at home for at least 14 days.

You don’t need to tell the NHS you’re staying at home, and you won’t be tested for coronavirus. You only need to get in touch with the NHS if:

  • you don’t feel better after 7 days
  • your symptoms are getting worse
  • you feel you can’t cope with your symptoms at home.

You should do this by calling 111 or using the NHS online coronavirus service. Do not go to your doctor’s surgery or to hospital.


What is the advice for visitors including those who are providing care for you?

You should contact your regular social visitors such as friends and family to let them know that you are reducing social contacts and that they should not visit you during this time unless they are providing essential care for you. Essential care includes things like help with washing, dressing, or preparing meals.

If you receive regular health or social care from an organisation, either through your local authority or paid for by yourself, inform your care providers that you are reducing social contacts and agree on a plan for continuing your care.

If you receive essential care from friends or family members, speak to your carers about extra precautions they can take to keep you safe. You may find this guidance on Home care provision useful.

It is also a good idea to speak to your carers about what happens if one of them becomes unwell. If you need help with care but you’re not sure who to contact, or if you do not have family or friends who can help you, you can contact your local council who should be able to help you.

If you have caring responsibilities, Carers UK suggests looking at putting a contingency plan in place, and if you can, make cover arrangements with trusted neighbours, friends or family members. Have  a look at their information on coronavirus.

If you receive help with formal care services to support your caring responsibilities, you may wish to speak to your care provider or local authority should have you have queries or concerns about continuity of care.

Do I need to wear a face mask?

During normal day-to-day activities face masks don't protect people from viruses like coronavirus. The best way to reduce any risk of infections is with good hygiene, like washing your hands, and avoiding direct or close contact (within 2 metres) with any potentially infected person.

Health and social care professionals may wear masks if they're looking after people who have tested positive for coronavirus, or may have been infected. If someone has been told they have coronavirus, they may be advised to wear a mask. 

I’m worried about someone, what should I do?

There are still plenty of things we can all do to help others during this time.

  • Stay in touch with people over the phone, by post, online. We may not be able to see each other in person, but we can still spend time together. 
  • For those who are able to have face to face contact with others, you could also pop by for a chat, but you must remember to take precautions outlined above and by the Government.
  • Ask people if they need any help with shopping for essentials or offer to help by running some errands. It could be that someone needs a prescription collecting from the pharmacy, for example. 

How do I look out for my neighbours and community?

The simplest thing everyone can do right now is look out for their neighbours and offer help with shopping and other errands. Knowing who needs help and making sure they can access help but stay safe. 

Remember it's not just about neighbours who are self-isolating or vulnerable. You can also help by not panic buying but adding a little to your shopping list to donate to the foodbanks in your area. Most supermarkets will collect these in store, minimising travel and risk. 

Other people in the community who might also appreciate help are:

  • stretched medical staff and volunteers
  • staff and volunteers in key worker roles
  • supermarket workers
  • delivery drivers.

How to stay safe when supporting others

  • Let family and friends know what you’re doing.
  • Support family, friends and neighbours by phone or video call.
  • Stay at least two metres - about three steps - away from people you’re helping.
  • Offer to run errands for people but stay outside of people’s homes.
  • Keep washing your hands often for 20 seconds.
  • Don’t take on too much - it's often better not to offer at all than to let someone down.
  • If you’re trying to help someone with very serious issues – don’t be afraid to flag with appropriate statutory services

What is the advice on good hygiene?

  • wash your hands on arrival and often, using soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser
  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards
  • do not visit if you are unwell and make alternative arrangements for their care
  • provide information on who they should call if they feel unwell, how to use NHS 111 online coronavirus service and leave the number for NHS 111 prominently displayed
  • find out about different sources of support that could be used and access further advice on creating a contingency plan is available from Carers UK
  • look after your own well-being and physical health during this time. 

I'm feeling really anxious about Coronavirus

It's completely understandable to be worried about the impact coronavirus may have on you or those you care about. Try to stay calm and follow the official advice from the Government.

We also have some tips to help you think about your wellbeing over comings weeks and months here

Latest Government Advice

Useful Links

Local News and Information:


Supporting Charities and Volunteers during Coronavirus:

NCVO have put up resources on how to keep charities afloat during the coronavirus period here

NCVO have also made their member-only resources free to everyone because of the current situation, click here to see


Important information about COVID-19 coronavirus for families with disabled children here


Please follow the links for the information on the following conditions and other organisations:

National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society: 

Asthma UK: Health advice updated regularly 

National Autism Society: Information about Coronavirus

Blood and Transplant NHS: Blood donation

British Paralympic Association: Exercising at home

British Sign Language: BSL video on social distancing and self-isolation



Children and Young People: 

Crohn’s & Colitis UK: Regular updated

Debt: Step Change Debt and coronavirus

Dementia: Alzheimer’s Society 

Diabetes: Diabetes UK

Disability and Benefits: 

Domestic Abuse: Women's Aid The Impact of Coronavirus 

Drugs and Alcohol: Awaiting local update

Easy Read and Large Print Information:

Heart: British Heart Foundation - What it means for you if you have heart or circulatory disease

HIV: Terrence Higgins Trust Latest update

Kidney: National Kidney Federation  Latest information and advice

Lung: British Lung Foundation - Information and useful links

Languages: Coronavirus advice in English, Albanian, Arabic, French, Portuguese, Spanish, Turkish, Polish, Romanian, Russian, more languages to follow, can be found here

Mental Health:

Multiple sclerosis: MS Society - Covid 19 and MS treatments

NHS: Coronavirus overview   NHS 111 online   

GOV UK: Guidance on social distancing for everyone in the UK

Older People: Age UK - Latest news and updates   Practical ways to help older people

Pregnancy: Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologist - Coronavirus infection and pregnancy

Isolate: A4 Poster

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England: Supporting your mental health while working at home

Sensory Loss: Living with Hearing Loss - Your COVID-19 Hearing Loss Survival Guide  Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) Coronavirus update

Social Distancing: GOV UK Guidance on social distancing for everyone in the UK

Stroke: Stroke Association - Coronavirus (COVID-19) information for people affected by stroke

Terminal Illness: Marie Curie - Coronavirus (COVID-19) if you’re affected by terminal illness









Scope - 

Google search and Pinterest are a great source of inspiration but here are a few ideas to get you started. 





Make some beautiful paper flowers 


  More paper flowers       




Given the current situation with Coronavirus (COVID-19), all libraries will be closed from 10am on Saturday 21 March until further notice. But this does not mean you can not access the facilities of your library. If you are not currently signed up, you can sign up to join the library here

  • Did you know you can access ebooks and eAudiobooks? 
  • Did you know you can use their online services such as dictionaries, encyclopaedias or biographies, practice for your Citizenship or Driving Theory test?
  • Did you know you can also read today’s newspapers from across the world with Pressreader or read magazines rbDigital? 

If you you are already signed up all you need is your Barnet Library card and your pin, then you can access their online services here,  you do not have a library card, you can join up here , you will then be emailed everything you need to start using the libraries online services straight away.