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Bookrests and writing slopes

This section includes equipment to provide support when reading and writing. Equipment may be suitable for adults, children or both.

Freestanding reading stands are designed for use on table tops. They will have non-standard features, including angle adjustment and holders to keep paper in place.

Floor standing bookrests for use in a bed or chair. Most models consist of a height adjustable metal frame with an arm which attaches to the book rest.

Reading and writing slopes that are designed to be used on a table or desk. They may include features such as a slip-resistant base, an adjustable angle of support and/or magnets to hold book or papers.

Manual page turners that assist with turning book, magazine or newspaper pages. They are sticks that are held in the hands or mouth with a rubber tip used to turn pages by sliding them to the next side.

Electric page turners that assist with turning book, magazine or newspaper pages. They are powered, fully automated devices which hold a book and turn the pages when switches are activated. Some models can be used with a range of switches including pressure activated, sound activated, suck or blow operation.

Desk and table accessories includes equipment that can provide additional assistance when reading or writing.

Alligator Easy Grip Ruler
Easy grip ruler. Comprises: 30cm long ruler with handle; markings in centimetres and millimetres.
Book Holder Booklift
Folding easel style book holder with adjustable height and angle plastic frame, two adjustable clips and front lip for holding reading material in sit...
Book Holder Stand
Mobile floor standing book holder. Comprises: weighted base on castors; adjustable height upright; adjustable horizontal arm with tilting and rotating...
Book Seat
Free standing bookrest. Comprises: bean bag style design; faux suede washable cover with handhold and rear pocket.
Deluxe Bookchair
Free standing, foldable bookrest, for table top or lap. Comprises: lightweight wood frame in the style of a deck chair; taut canvas with two wooden pa...
Eschenbach Reading Stand
Table top, wooden bookrest, with a ledge at the lower edge to support book against a rectangular surface. Angle adjusts by positioning rear support ba...
Flexdesk 630 Adjustable Document Holder-Writing Slope
Dual function document holder and writing slope. Comprises: locks in two positions, away from the user as a document holder or towards the user as a w...
Folding Book & Magazine Stand
Folding table top bookrest. Comprises: coated wire frame; two hook rests to support book; slip-resistant rubber feet; spring clip to hold pages flat. ...
Hold It Book Holder
Floor standing bookrest. Comprises: five-star castor base; aluminium and plastic construction; adjustable height stem; book holder which can double as...
Large Posturite Writing Angle
Rectangular plastic writing slope for use on table or desk. Comprises: slip-resistant writing surface and feet; lip to fit over front edge of desk. Wr...
Mouth Stick
Mouthsticks which adjust in angle and length via telescopic mechanism. Available with pointer end for page turning or with attachment for securing imp...
Multirite Document Holder & Writing Slope
Writing slope which doubles as a document holder adjustable in height and angle. Slip-resistant base. Can be positioned over keyboard.
Posturite Boards
Range of portable, adjustable angle table top stands, which can be used to hold paper for writing or to support a book or keyboard. Magnet to hold pap...
Posturite Document Slope With Wrist Rest
Acrylic writing slope. Comprises: non reflective surface; cushioned wrist support area.
Folding writing slope. Comprises: adjustable angle wooden frame; slip-resistant base; two magnets for holding paper; lip holds books or pens.
Readezy Bookrest
Folding, adjustable angle bookrest suitable for books and A4 pages.
Suction Hand Rails
Range of suction handrails. Comprises: plastic; end suction cups; for use on melamine trays and table tops only.
Turny Page Turner
Mains powered page turner which supports books, magazines or newspapers. Comprises: adjustable height book rest, adjusts from horizontal to vertical; ...
Buying equipment

There are several factors to consider when purchasing equipment.

Making complaints and reporting unsafe products

In most instances a complaint should initially be made to the supplier who provided you with the item. CAB has a range of guidelines on their website on making a complaint about poor service or faulty goods. These include complaining by phone, complaining in writing and template letters. CAB advice about making a complaint.
If you are not satisfied with the supplier's response then you may choose to complain to:

  • an ombudsman scheme
  • a regulator
  • an independent mediator
  • a trade association (if the supplier is a member of one)


Safety incidents involving medical devices can be reported to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) on the GOV UK website www.mhra.gov.uk or their Adverse incident centre hotline 020 3080 7080. The MHRA is the government agency responsible for ensuring that medical devices and medicines work and are acceptably safe. Their definition of 'Medical devices' includes devices used for assisting patients and users, thus many daily living aids such as bath lifts, commodes and walking sticks are medical devices. Any incident involving the safety of a medical device (including safety issues with its instructions for use) should be reported to the MHRA, especially if the incident contributed to, or could have caused injury, life-threatening illness or death.

Buying from a private person

Buying from a private person gives you fewer rights. You will only be able to claim against the seller if the product doesn't match its description or if the seller did not own it. Consequently, some firms occasionally pretend to be private sellers to avoid their legal responsibilities towards customers. If you suspect this has happened to you find out about your rights and what action to take on the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) website https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/ or call 0345 404 0506 to speak to the Citizen Advice consumer helpline.


The length of the manufacturer's guarantee does not limit any claim you may make to the seller as if a product develops a fault outside the guarantee period you can still claim against the seller if you can show that the fault was unreasonable at that period in the products life.


You may be asked whether you would like to purchase an extended warranty. Remember that your statutory rights exist, under the Sale of Goods Act, whether or not you choose to buy their warranty and whether or not the goods came with any guarantee. Manufacturers' guarantees are separate from the automatic rights you have against the seller, and may be more limited. For more information read the Citizens Advice Bureau guide to guarantees and warranties.

Maintenance and insurance

For large complex items, such as a stairlift, check what kind of maintenance contract the supplier offers.

Membership of trade associations

Some suppliers are members of a trade association. Many of these trade associations have a code of practice that governs their members' customer service, and thus may help to project you from unscrupulous selling practices. For example, some trade associations prohibit their members from contacting people uninvited to try and sell their products. They may also prohibit their members from using high pressure selling tactics such as offering a discount if you order that day, or phoning their manager while demonstrating the equipment to you to agree a 'special discount/deal'. Thus if you have a choice of suppliers for the product you wish to purchase we recommend you consider the suppliers who are members of trade association.

We record suppliers' membership of several trade associations (see a list of these trade associations) and our ratings give greater weighting to trade associations with codes of practice which are approved by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) (e.g. the British Healthcare Trade Association) or governed by an audit scheme which meets the requirements of the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS).

We also record whether suppliers meet the ISO 9000 series of standards. These standards define a Quality System which certifies that formalised business processes are being applied, and thus may be another indicator to look for if you have a choice of suppliers.


You may be able to purchase equipment designed for use by disabled people without paying the VAT if you are 'chronically sick or disabled', and you are buying the item/s for your own personal or domestic use. For VAT purposes, a person is 'chronically sick or disabled' if they:

  • Have a physical or mental impairment which has a long-term and substantial adverse effect on their ability to carry out everyday activities.
  • Have a condition that the medical profession treats as a chronic sickness (e.g. diabetes).
  • Are terminally ill.


So, you won't qualify if you're only temporarily disabled or incapacitated (e.g. if you have a broken leg).

Examples of products which are likely to qualify for VAT relief (if intended for the personal or domestic use of a chronically sick or disabled person) include:


  • wheelchairs
  • stairlifts
  • computer software or hardware designed specifically for disabled individuals
  • kettle tippers, tap turners, button hooks and similar gadgets or devices that are designed solely to make everyday tasks easier for disabled individuals
  • artificial limbs
  • vehicles that have been adapted for use by a wheelchair or stretcher user


Price is important but, if we list more than one supplier, it is important to look for more than just the cheapest price. Check when the prices were last updated (this should be stated under each price). Consider whether:

  • Postage/delivery is included (if shopping by mail order or online)
  • Is the supplier a member of a trade association? (see below)
  • Is one supplier listing the price with VAT and another without VAT?
  • Check the suppliers' returns policies and any guarantees / warranties (see below).
  • For complex equipment that requires maintenance and/or servicing check what's included in the price and what the ongoing costs will be.

Get advice and an assessment

Experienced therapists or trusted assessors know a lot about products and will help you make sure the product is right for you now and will continue to be suitable in the future. 


You may be able to get an assessment and advice from social services. GOV.UK website
Alternatively you may choose to pay for a private occupational therapist. If you wish to request a private appointment with an occupational therapist then you can obtain details of local private occupational therapists from the 'College of Occupational Therapists Specialist Section - Independent Practice' (COTSS-IP) website. www.cotss-ip.org.uk or phone their enquiry Line: 0845 129 7699.
You can check whether a therapist is state registered with the Health Care professions Council (HCPC) at www.hcpc-uk.org/audiences/

Try before you buy

You can find out about products and try them out, with independent advice at an Independent Living Centre (ILC). There are about 30 ILCs in the UK. Most do not sell products but they will be able to tell you where to buy them. We recommend you make an appointment before you visit

You could view equipment at an exhibition. They are a good opportunity to see what's available and meet the competing suppliers. The main exhibition of equipment is NAIDEX, held annually at the National Exhibition Centre in Birmingham, and Glasgow. www.naidex.co.uk

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