British Land supports Young Readers Programme for third year running
Shopping centre operator British Land is partnering with the National Literacy Trust for the third year running to support the trust's Young Readers Programme which encourages children to develop a love of reading.
This year’s programme was launched at Glasgow Fort with 200 children from three local primary schools taking part in activities designed to help them associate reading with fun.
The children were treated to a storytelling session with professional storyteller Amanda Edmiston and a behind the scenes tour of the WH Smith book department. They were also given the chance to decorate bookmarks with Hobbycraft and cookies with Millie’s Cookies.
British Land is committing more than £500,000 to the programme over the next three years and is expanding its involvement this year to include 18 shopping centres and retail parks, compared to 12 in 2013. This will enable 4,500 children to participate in reading activities in British Land shopping centres across the UK.
A variety of reading events have been organised featuring guest readers, professional storytellers and children’s characters and some children will dress up as their favourite character. School visits will take place until June.
Reading events for shoppers, with professional storytellers, will also be run this year.
Each child participating in the programme will be shown how to choose books at the right level for them and they will also be able to select three new books to keep. At sites with a WH Smith store, the retailer has donated vouchers to each of the participating schools to help them boost their library resources.
Charles Maudsley, head of retail for British Land, said: “The Young Reader’s Programme is a fantastic initiative to ignite a child’s love of reading and we are delighted to be supporting it again this year. Following the success of the 2013 programme, we have increased the number of our shopping centres and retail parks involved and are delighted to be able to reach 4,500 children working with one of our key retailers, WH Smith, and the National Literacy Trust.”
Michael Neil, books director for WH Smith, added: “WH Smith is committed to promoting literacy and a love of reading and we are delighted to be working with British Land and the National Literacy Trust again this year. Our staff are really looking forward to welcoming the children into our stores over the coming months.”
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