British Land extends partnership with WH Smith in Young Readers Programme
Shopping centre owner British Land is partnering with key tenant WH Smith for the second year running to support the National Literacy Trusts Young Readers Programme which aims to help children improve their reading and literacy skills.
British Land has committed £120,000 to help expand the programme from four sites to 12 in 2013 to enable 3,000 children to participate in reading activities across British Land shopping centres and retail parks in Barnstaple, Basildon, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leicester, London, Oldham, Peterborough, Plymouth, Rotherham, Speke and Stockton-on-Tees.
WH Smith, a long-term supporter of the Young Readers Programme, will host visits for the children and their teachers to the stores and show the children how to choose books at the right level and of interest to them. School visits will take place between March and June.
Each child that participates in the programme is shown how to choose suitable books and is invited to select three new books to keep. At sites with a WH Smith store, the retailer has also donated vouchers to each of the participating schools to help boost their library resources.
This year’s programme was launched at British Land’s Glasgow Fort Shopping Park with participation from 250 children from four local primary schools.
Charles Maudsley, head of retail for British Land, said: "Following the success of the 2012 programme, we are delighted to be able to reach 3,000 children this year working with one of our key tenants WH Smith and the National Literacy Trust. We believe that helping children develop a love of reading at a young age, will give them a lifetime of pleasure and opportunity."
Rachel Russell, books director for WH Smith, added: "WH Smith has been a supporter of the National Literacy Trust for many years and we are very pleased to be working in partnership with British Land again this year. Our staff really enjoy the events and look forward to welcoming the children into our stores over the coming months."
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