Digital Exclusion and Digital Skills

Are you one of the 11 million people in the UK lacking basic digital skills? Are you unable to log in to the internet and access services? Are you lacking the digital confidence to use a computer or other devices effectively? Do you need to develop your digital skills so that you can work more effectively?

Thurrock Council are committed to tackling digital exclusion across the Borough. We believe that everyone should be able to enjoy a better quality of life and improve their wellbeing by being digitally connected. Across the Borough, Thurrock Adult Community College, Thurrock Libraries and other local community and voluntary organisations work together to offer a range of advice, support and training to help residents get online.

What is on offer

Free internet access

  • Open access computers are available at 11 venues across the Borough at your local library or at the College. You can also bring your own device and log on to the free public wifi at all venues.Pre-book during the pandemic.
  • All venues are operating on a pre-booking basis as we limit contact to keep everybody safe during the Coronavirus pandemic. You can pre-book a time slot in advance at any library or at Thurrock Adult Community College by calling 01375 372476 or emailing When you book, please let us know if you are likely to need support to help you log in to the internet so that we can make sure that there is a member of staff there to help you.
    (Please note that Stanford-Le-Hope Library and Purfleet Hub are currently closed at the moment due to Coronavirus restrictions).

Support to get you online and to log in if you need it

  • When you book, please let us know if you would like to support to help you log in to the internet so that we can make sure that there is a member of staff available. Staff can help you with a wide variety of tasks like completing housing applications, making GP appointments or accessing online banking.
  • The UK Census will have to be completed entirely online in 2021. 11 venues cross the Borough at your local library or at the College will be open as Census Support Centres.

Courses and training to help you develop your IT and digital skills

A wide range of courses are available that are FREE to all residents

  • Learn My Way - this website contains over 30 free courses designed to help beginners get started with basics including:
    • Using your computer or device: Using a keyboard, mouse and touch screen
    • Online basics - using the internet, email and completing online forms
    • Office programs - creating documents and spreadsheets
    • More internet skills - Video calling, online shopping and socialising online
    • Online safety - Keeping your device safe, being safe online and keeping your personal data safe
    • Finding a job online - job hunting online, accessing the National Careers Service website and jobs and interviews
    • Improving your health online - GP services online and accessing the NHS website
    • Managing your money online - online and mobile banking and make money work
    • Public services online - Using public services online and claiming Universal Credit

Please note, you will need a Centre number to register for a free Learn My Way account. Contact your local library or the College to find yours.

  • Beginners computer sessions
    If you prefer face to face learning, Wiser4IT sessions are ideal for anyone who wants to learn how to use a computer. This 5-week FREE course is run in the libraries and is ideal for the over-50s but is open to everyone. Sessions cover: Using a mouse and getting started on a computer; exploring the internet, sending and replying to emails; typing simple documents and word processing; adding pictures and clip art to documents.
    Email for further information
  • Digital Skills training courses for adults - Essential Digital Skills are FREE 14 week courses at Beginner or Intermediate level. Search and book or register your interest from the Find A Course page at

Access to equipment

  • Access to low-cost computer equipment is available to all residents as part of our partnerships with the Online Centres Network. Refurbished desktop computers are available from from as little as £85 and laptops from £115, plus a delivery fee. Contact your local library or the College to find out more.
  • Also, if you sign up for a course at the College, we can also offer equipment loans and internet connectivity to help you access and get the most out of your adult learning.

Essential Skills poster



Online Meetings