Who We Are

Reading Mencap supports people with learning disabilities and their families throughout their lives by providing information, advice and practical support to help them lead happy, safe and fulfilling lives.

Founded in 1962 by local parents of children and adults with learning disabilities and autism, the aim was to provide support so individuals with learning disabilities and their families might lead a full and active life in their community.

We aim to:

  • Reduce inequality in statutory services
  • Combat isolation and discrimination
  • Bring to local people an experience of having people with learning disabilities as part of their community. This could be by means of a mixed choir carol-singing in a local church at Christmas, adults with learning disability taking part in a campaign about a local issue, or carers speaking out for themselves at local forums.

We have our own premises in central Reading, at 21 Alexandra Road, near the Royal Berkshire Hospital. This includes offices, a meeting space and a large club room and garden.

Today we are proud to offer:

You can enjoy our celebrations to mark our 60th anniversary on our You Tube channel.

Get in touch

Call us on 0118 966 2518. Our phone line is open from 9.30am to 3.30pm, Monday to Friday, with an answering machine service at all other times. You can email us on office@readingmencap.org.uk

Family Support Team

Our team of Family Advisers are an outreach service who are there to give support and information with problems which need a bit more help to sort out. You can reach them on our office telephone line (0118 9662518), by appointment at our drop-in centre or by appointment at home.

All the team are experienced and qualified in learning disability. See our Family Support page for more details.

Clubs and Activities

We run a range of clubs for adults, a support service for carers, and other events for carers throughout the year.


We sit on many forums and steering groups including the Carers Steering Group to give a voice to learning disability.

We use our contacts at both local and national level to drive action when issues arise. Our aim is to empower parents and individuals to help them to help themselves, so that they can choose how they want to live their lives. Statutory services don’t always understand the problems that face people with learning disabilities or their families and carers on a daily basis, but we do because our members tell us every day, and many of us are parents of children or adults with learning disabilities ourselves.


Use our Contact Us page to seek answers to queries, provide feedback, or send comments to Reading Mencap.