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News story

Books for lunch for 5,000 Blackpool children this Christmas!

10 Dec 2021

2. Pupils at St Kentigern's were delighted to receive their shiny new Paddington books.JPG

Get Blackpool Reading partners with Blackpool Council Catering Service to gift 5,000 books to local children to receive alongside their Christmas school lunch this festive season.

Get Blackpool Reading, our local campaign with Blackpool Opportunity Area and Blackpool Council, is gifting 5,000 books to children at 24 primary schools this Christmas.

The books will be served with a side of fun literacy activities as part of festive school dinners – provided by Blackpool Council Catering Service – to inspire children to continue reading over the Christmas holidays and beyond.

"The books look amazing! Thank you so much, what a difference they will make to our children!"

Frances Wygladala, Headteacher at St Kentigern's Catholic Primary School

Generously donated by publisher HarperCollins, the gifted books include festive favourites and side-splitting stories such as Grandpa Christmas by Michael Morpurgo, The Night Before Christmas by Clement Clarke Moore, Paddington and the Christmas Surprise by Michael Bond, and Father Christmas Heard a Parp by Olaf Falafel.

This comes as new research(i) from the National Literacy Trust reveals that 1 in 11 children and young people from a disadvantaged background do not have a single book at home compared with 1 in 20 of their more financially advantaged peers. In addition, children who have their own books are three times more likely to say that they read every day, and that they enjoy reading.

Blackpool Library Service is also supporting the initiative by providing schools with a festive video reading of The Elves and the Shoemaker delivered by library staff to entertain pupils and encourage them to visit their local library during the school break.

Stephanie Wood, Manager of Get Blackpool Reading, said: “We are delighted to be working with Blackpool Council to give local children the gift of reading this festive season. Pupils’ Christmas school lunches will be served with extra special trimmings this year as we know that children who have books of their own enjoy reading more, do better at school and are happier.

“We wish everyone in Blackpool a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year and encourage all to borrow, buy or gift a book to start their own reading adventure this festive season and beyond.

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