Summer Reading Challenge

I wholeheartedly support the campaign run by the Reading Agency to encourage all primary school children to take part in this year’s Summer Reading Challenge which launched on Saturday 13 July 2019. The Challenge helps get over 700,000 children into libraries each year.

I was presented with books at a Parliamentary launch of the Summer Reading Challenge on 5 June 2019, hosted by the Libraries All-Party Parliamentary Group and the Reading Agency, and heard about the Agency’s work to promote reading amongst people of all ages. I donated the books to Darlaston Library.

This year’s Reading Challenge theme is ‘Space Chase’, inspired by the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing. 1,855 children in Walsall took part in the challenge last year. I hope we can increase that number this year and remind local libraries what a valuable asset they are to us and our community.

Reading for pleasure can promote better health and wellbeing and is important to a child’s cognitive development. Research suggests that reading for just 30 minutes a week is associated with higher life satisfaction and better sleeping patterns and Children who use libraries are twice as likely to be above average readers.

I hope parents, grandparents and carers in Walsall South will take their children to the library over the summer to sign up for the Summer Reading Challenge. It’s free, inclusive and, most importantly, makes reading fun.