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Resources for Loneliness and Connection

We’ve collected some resources that may help you if you or someone you know is feeling lonely, for whatever reason. There is no shame to loneliness and it can affect anyone. We hope these resources may be of some help.

The Red Cross

The Red Cross has a page about loneliness, its causes, and how to cope.

NHS: Every Mind Matters

The mental health arm of the NHS also has a page offering advice, support and a range of links to specific services that may affect a person’s loneliness.


The mental health charity MIND offers tips on how to manage loneliness, with talking therapies available online and in person.

Hub of Hope

Hub of Hope is the UK’s leading mental health database, where a person can search for support in their area from different services, such as the NHS, and local, national, private or charity support – all in one place.

Cruse Bereavement

Cruse offers support specifically in the case of bereavement.

Simon on the Street

Simon on the Street talks about the correlation between homelessness and loneliness in this article.


Shelter offers support for those experiencing homelessness.

Parental Loneliness

This link offers support and advice for parents that are struggling with loneliness.

Loneliness in the LGBT+ Community

LGBT Hero talks loneliness in the LGBT+ community and how those affected can seek advice and support.

Loneliness in Young People

Young Minds provides support and advice for young people experiencing loneliness.


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Loneliness and Volunteering at Christmas

Loneliness during the Christmas period is an issue that was exacerbated by the COVID-19 crisis, with many people catching the virus and having to isolate on Christmas Day in the last couple of years.

This year, the cost of living crisis may mean that people spend less time with their loved ones, with a third of adults saying they will cut back on social gatherings and a further 21% stating that they will reduce the amount of travelling they do to visit family and friends who live far away, according to a recent YouGov poll.

Loneliness amongst the elderly at Christmas is already a big concern – nearly a million over-65s were expected to be lonely last Christmas – and this will only deepen the worry.

Some people may also be socially isolated and lonely during the rest of the year, and the pressure to spend time with friends and family over the festive period only makes feelings of isolation and loneliness worse. At House of Books and Friends we hope to be a welcoming and friendly place for those feeling socially isolated this Christmas, and every book sold counts in making a tangible difference in our community.

If you or anyone you know are looking for a way to spend your time on Christmas Day while we are closed, we have collected some links that may be able to help.

Community Christmas

Community Christmas provides a free online directory of local festive events and activities taking place across the UK, between 17 December 2022 and 1 January 2023, which are open to local older people who would otherwise be spending Christmas alone.

The Christmas Dinner Project

Established by Lemn Sissay ten years ago, this project connects local people able to provide and enjoy a Christmas dinner with care leavers ages 18-25 years old. Based in Manchester originally, there are now options all over the country for those who’d like to get involved.

FoodCycle Salford Cornerstone Community Meal

A vegetarian Christmas dinner, free of charge, taking place on the 20th December. FoodCycle also have branches in Levenshulme and Salford Angel Centre, where there is a community meal every week. Please check with them directly for Christmas opening times.

Manchester Community Central Volunteering Opportunities

If you have some spare time to help with your local community this Christmas, here is a variety of volunteering opportunities around Manchester that you can get involved in.

Salford Loaves And Fishes

Salford Loaves and Fishes are open on Christmas Day from 12pm until 2:30pm for anyone who is on their own and would like some company. They also give away a free gift. To sign up, visitors should go to their centre (1 Paddington close, Salford, M6 5PL) Monday-Friday 9am-2pm.

Volunteers can sign up to help from 11am-3pm on Christmas Day for as long as they would like – to do this, email

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We are opening!


We have some wonderful news: we have an official opening date of Monday, 12th December! We are so excited to confirm that our bookshop will be open just in time for Christmas, and we will be there for all of your gifting needs in the run up to the big day.

A little bit about us: we are an independent bookstore opening in Manchester, which sells new books for adult and children. However, we are a little different than your average bookshop.

We are a not-for-profit, Community Interest Company with the aim of combatting social isolation and loneliness. We believe that bookshops can play a significant role in fostering a sense of community and helping those isolated or feeling lonely.  Every penny you spend in our store, or on, goes towards our mission.

We would like you to leave our bookshop feeling better connected to the community. In time, we will have a book club, chatty cafe days, and many other initiatives that will alleviate social isolation and loneliness in a practical way. Every book sold makes a difference.

We are thrilled to welcome you on our opening day, but please bear in mind that this will be the first day for our new booksellers and we would appreciate it if you could be patient and kind with us while we find our feet.

See you in a couple of weeks!