Love Our Libraries

If you’re new to the area or just haven’t paid your local library a visit for a while, go — there’s a lot more going on than you think

Just turning up and reading a new story book is a joy in itself, but did you know that most of the libraries in Newham offer a wonderful range of free activities and events for young families? Time to start making the most of it! Here is a list of everything that’s happening, all in one place…

Beckton Globe

There’s a really comprehensive and diverse roster of arts based activities here, suitable for all the family.

Arts & Crafts: The whole family are welcome, learn a different craft each week. Monday 4-5pm.

Film Club: Family film screenings, suitable for all ages. And it’s a double whammy. Tuesday 4.30-6.30pm and Saturday 2-4pm.

Storytelling: Stories and rhyme time for little ones up to five years old. Another double offering! Monday, 11am-midday and Tuesday, 10.30-11.30am.

Toy Library: ​​Introducing toddlers under five to borrowing (and sharing? I live in hope) toys. Thursday, 11am-12 midday.

Daddy and me: As you may have guessed this group is specifically for dads and their children. Last Saturday of every month, 11.15am-12 midday.

Games club: Board games and other activities for children aged 5–11. Friday, 5.30-6.30pm,

Beckton Globe Library, 1 Kingsford Way, E6 5JQ

020 3373 0853

Canning Town

Canning Town host a small but perfectly formed timetable of storytelling for little ones and some interesting groups for slightly older children.

​Storytelling​: Story and rhyme time fun for ​children up to five years old. Tuesday, 10.45-11.30am.

Arts & Crafts Workshop: Canning Town Library says “get creative and let your imagination run wild at these free, fun, interactive sessions​”. For children aged 5–12. Saturday, 2-3pm. ​

Games Club: ​Slightly older children can enjoy a range of board games and other activities. For children aged 5–12. Thursdays, 4–6pm.

​Computer Games​: Get stuck into ​Sony PS3, Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii, board games and many more! For children and young people aged 7-16. Thursdays during term time, 4–6pm.

Canning Town Library, Barking Road, E16 4HQ

020 3373 0854

Custom House

This library is putting on some really interesting sessions, I’ve included ones for slightly older children too.

Storytelling​​: Story and rhyme time fun for children up to five years old. Mondays during term time, 10.30-11.30am​.

Reading Together: Simply time to read and share books with your little one. Thursday, 2.30-3pm​.

The Story Painters Craft Club with Ingeenium: This one is not to be missed. Ingeenium is a creativity-centred charity that provides participant-led arts projects for Londoners.Their ‘Story Painters’ group aims to create beautiful artwork based on hand-picked themes.

Saturday, 2–3pm​. For children ages 5–12. You can find out more about Ingeenium here

Games club: ​​Sony PS4, board games and many more free fun activities for children and young people aged 7 to 16. Tuesdays during term time, 3.30-5.30pm.

Code club:​ Make a start with code; Scratch, python, cartoons, websites. Bring your laptop if you have one.​ ​Course booking is required. Saturday, Beginners 10-11am, Improvers 11am-midday.

Custom House Library, Prince Regent Lane, E16 3JJ

020 3373 0855

East Ham

East Ham Library has something for everyone packed into their fun filled weekly schedule.

Little Rhymers​​: Interactive song, rhyme and play session to encourage children to learn through play and song. Tuesday, ​10–10.45am (term time only).

Craft challenge: An opportunity for the whole family to get creative and crafty every week. Friday, 5.30–6.15pm​.

East Ham Performing Arts: Jazz hands at the ready! An exciting programme of dance, drama, music and song, suitable for all. Friday, 6.30–7.30pm​​.

Family arts and craft: ​​Families can create and take home their own masterpieces. Wednesday, 5.30–7.30pm.

Family film night: Catch a family friendly screening, hosted every week. Saturday, 5.30–7.30pm​​.

Youth Zone: ​One for the older children; free fun activities for children and young people aged 7 to 16. Monday, 4-7pm.

East Ham Library, 328 Barking Road, E6 2RT

020 3373 0827

The Gate

A fantastic library with a diverse mix of activities for adults and children alike. Here are the best regular sessions for young’uns…

Storytelling:​ Stories and rhyme time for little ones up to five years old. Tuesday, 10.30–11.30am​.

Bumps and babies:​ Free activities for the under 5s and their parents and carers.​ Friday, 1.30-3.30pm.

Children’s movie club: ​Free film screenings for slightly older children, aged 7 to 12. Under 8s must be accompanied by an adult. Friday, 4-6pm. Booking essential.

Lego club: ​A Lego building club, what a brilliant idea! For children aged 5 to 12 years old. Saturday, 3-4pm​.

Games club​: ​​Sony PS3, Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii, board games and lots more for children and young people aged 7 to 16. Wednesday, 3.30-5pm

The Gate Community Neighbourhood Centre, 2-6 Woodgrange Road, E7 0QH

020 3373 0856

Green Street

Arts and crafts: ​​A different craft based learning opportunity every week, for the whole family. Saturday, 1–2pm

Film club: Free screenings for families. Each week they reveal the following weeks film so that you can sign up in advance. No booking is needed if you haven’t signed up. Saturday, 3-4.30pm

Lego club: ​A whole world of fun with lego! No minimum age is given so judge for yourself if you think your little one would like to participate. Saturday 2–3pm and Thursday 4–5pm

Stay and play: Spend quality time with your child and help them learn and develop through play. Under 5s. Saturday, 12 noon-1pm

Sensory storytelling: ​Storytelling from the team at St Steven’s early start centre. Friday 1-2pm

Sensory play: Another great bonding session for parents and their tots, helping them develop through sensory experience. Under 5's, Friday (term time) 1-2pm​ ​

Storytelling: An additional story and singing session for children up to five years old. Saturday, 11.30am-12pm

Green Street Library, 337–341 Green Street, Upton Park, E13 9AR

020 3373 0857

Manor Park

Baby rhyme and massage:​ Discover rhyme time and baby massage for children up to one year old. Wednesday, 12.30–1.30pm

Storytelling: This story and rhyme time session is especially for under 5's.
Friday, 10.30-11.30am

Manor Park Library, 685–693 Romford Road, Manor Park, E12 5AD

020 3373 0858

North Woolwich

Arts and crafts: This is a fun, creative arts and crafts workshop for slightly older children, ages 5 to 12 years.
Saturday, 2-3pm​​

Board games: A great opportunity to play favourite board games with lots of other children! Including Checkers, Ludo, Pictionary and many more. For children aged 7 to 13 years. Saturday, 11am-12 midday

Film club Thursday: Free film screenings suitable for the whole family.​ Thursday, 4-7pm​

Rhyme time​: A free, fun and interactive singing and story session especially for the under 5’s. Monday, 2.45-3.30pm and Tuesday, 10.30-11.15am

Young readers’ club: A chance for children aged 7 to 12 to have fun sharing their favourite books and discovering new ones. Tuesdays during term time, 4.30-5.15pm

North Woolwich Library, 5 Pier Parade, North Woolwich, E16 2LJ

020 3373 0843


Arts and crafts workshop​: ​​Get creative and let your imagination run wild at these free, fun, interactive sessions for children aged 5 to 12. Tuesday, 4-5pm

Early talk: ​Introduction of key words and signing to support children’s speech development. Under 5s.​ Every Tuesday during term time 9.30-11.30am

Film club: Enjoy movies from the past and present along with your family and friends. All are welcome. Saturday, 2pm​​​

Jiggery Friday: ​​A free music and dance session just for toddlers. Friday during term time, 10–11am.

Storytelling: ​​​Story and rhyme time sessions for under 5's. Tuesday, 10.30-11am​ and Thursday, 2-3pm

Plaistow Library, North Street, Plaistow, E13 9HL

020 3373 0859


Activ Tots​: ​Develop your toddlers fitness through fun active play, games and activities at this session. Thursday, 1-2pm

Baby club​: ​A fun and interactive drop-in session for parents and carers of babies under 18 months. Monday, 9.30am-11.30am, term time only

Baby massage​​: ​Learn the benefits of baby massage and simple techniques to relax and bond with your baby. For babies aged six weeks to mobile. Five week course — booking is essential. Contact Rebecca Cheetham Children’s Centre. Wednesday, 1-2pm

Music and movement: ​A session for children, parents and carers to get active using different types of dance and musical instruments. Monday, 1.30-2.30pm

​Stay and play: An opportunity for you to help your child under 5 learn and develop through play. Wednesdays, 10am-12 noon and Saturdays, 11am-1pm. Term time only.

​Stay and play, heuristic play focus​: A fun and interactive session to promote investigation, social skills and build confidence for under 5’s. Thursday 9.30–11.30am. Term time only.

Storytelling​: ​​Story and rhyme time session for children up to five years old. Tuesday and Friday, 11am-12 noon. Term time only.

Stratford Library, 3 The Grove, Stratford, E15 1EL

020 3373 0826

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