After a few questions over the past few days about our venues, I thought I would write a quick blog about them. We run from various locations across the North East, and each has a special place in the fabric that is NESL. Click each venue title for more details or a video. You can find the dates/times of these sessions here.
Slings at Home is our oldest session, and quite simply, it is the session I run from my home. Twice a month, I open our doors for a free to attend drop in session. When I started the sling library, our home was a different one, but the reasons for it remain the same. I want you to feel welcome, and as at ease as you would at your own home. Selfishly, we started at home so that my then toddler could nap in his own cot, and to save on having to charge an entry fee. That toddler is now 9 years old, but running from home, he and his brother have access to their toys and now the PS4.
When you arrive, just come straight in. Pop your details on the sign in sheet and if you fancy one, make yourself cuppa and enjoy a sweet treat that we always have available. Slings at home runs from my family room/kitchen, so there is plenty of room, toy and refreshments available. The slings, which are usually stored in my office, are moved int the dining room. This means, if a carrier is in stock, it is here.
This is my home and is not wheelchair accessible as there are 4 steps to enter the house. All our other venues are fully accessible. It is also case of take us as you find us. With full time job, two boys with more clubs than days of the week, and pets, sometimes we aren’t as tidy as I’d like. The animals are not allowed in the house while library is running.
Our newest session runs from the amazing Pulp Fiction Future Food cafe in Whitley Bay. This session is run by Madeleine. An experienced babywearing mum and now consultant. It is one of our smaller venues but perfect for a sling library. The food is to die for (vegan).
This venue is accessible from Monkseaton Metro Station and by bus.
We have been travelling to Ace Playce for several years. It is a huge soft play centre based in the heart of the Killingworth Centre. It is right next door to Morrions. There is huge free car park and easily accessible by bus. This venue does charge an entry fee but babies under 1 year old are free. Sit back, enjoy a drink from the cafe, let your older children burn off some steam and find a carrier that works for you.
The Thought Foundation is an amazing creative space and art gallery in Birtley. Easily accessible b public transport with the GoNorthEast Angel (no 21) stopping just outside.
It is fully accessible and again has a brilliant cafe serving an array of foods. This session is typically run by Rachel although occasionally Emma (peer supporter). We meet here on the 4th Sunday of the month providing an alternative weekend session. With all travelling venues, it isn’t possible to bring all our stock to this session. A post is put on our Facebook page in run up asking if you have any requests . If a carrier is available, we do our best to bring it.
Another of our North Tyneside sessions, the Family Centre in North Shields provides a bright and welcoming home for our North Shields session. The Family Centre is based at 99 Bedford Street and the sling library is there on the 2nd Tuesday of the month (9.30-11.30).
The sling library is welcomed once a month to Howdon Community Centre (Denbigh Avenue, Howdon, Wallsend) during the Baby Equipment Loan Service and Toy Library session. This is a popular session with close transport links to the Tyne and Wear Metro. At our last session, visitors to the sling library received a voucher for a free cuppa too. I don’t know if this will always happen but it is always nice if it does.
Any questions about any of our venues, just ask.