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Community languages

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What languages are available?

Adult fiction books are held at the four town centre libraries and are refreshed on a regular basis. These books can be reserved at any library in Medway, or by using the online catalogue.

  • Chatham Community Hub holds books in Bengali, Chinese,  Gujarati, Hindi, Polish, Punjabi, Russian, Tamil and Urdu.
  • Gillingham Library holds books in Bengali, Chinese, Hindi, Polish, Punjabi, Russian and Urdu.
  • Rochester Community Hub holds books in Hindi, Punjabi and Russian. Some smaller collections of easy to read "quick read" titles are also available.
  • Strood Library holds books in Hindi, Punjabi, Russian and Urdu.

Dual language books


Most libraries hold children's books with dual languages. The book will have the story in English and then one other language. Please ask at your library for information about what languages they hold.

Dual language books are available through the bookstart scheme. Details are available on Medway Libraries' bookstart page. 


Medway Libraries hold some books in dual languages for adults, with the story in English and then one other language. The languages available are Hindi, Punjabi, Somali, Spanish and Urdu. For more information about the titles available, please see the quick reads page.

Quick reads in languages other than English

These are held at Rochester Community Hub. Books are held in Arabic, French, German and Spanish. Please contact staff at Rochester library for more information.


Dual language dictionaries, dictionaries with English and one other language, are available in most libraries.


The library holds newspapers in some libraries in Bengali, Gujarati, Punjabi and Urdu. Access to online newspapers is available through the library links. Please ask staff for more information.


Conversation Café

Would you like to practice your English conversation? A conversation group meets up at Rochester community hub, every Wednesday morning during the Medway Adult Education term times from 10am until 11am and at Luton library every Tuesday afternoon during the Medway Adult Education term times from 2pm until 3pm. To check the dates please speak with a member of staff.

Free ESOL classes (English for speakers of other languages)

Would you like to improve your English for life, work and study in the UK? If you are not working, want to work and live in the UK and receive a state benefit you may be eligible for free English classes.

An ESOL class runs at Chatham Community Hub once a week. This is run by Medway adult education, during the evening. For more information contact 01634 338400 or email Ninu.sagar@medway.gov.uk

Black History month

Every year Medway Libraries celebrate Black History Month (BHM).

Local and community groups

  • Medway Ethnic Minority Forum MEMF