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A book for Christmas for every school child in Hastings!

This Christmas the news from The National Literacy Trust is that there will be a book for every school child in Hastings. Bloomsbury is donating 9,000 books to be given to school children from reception to Year 9, ages 5-14. The three-year Bloomsbury and the National Literacy Trust partnership aim to inspire a love of reading and improve literacy levels in Hastings.

With more than 9,000 books winging their way to schools in Hastings over the next month, local children will experience the joy of receiving their very own book this festive season.

For many children, this may be the first book they have ever owned, as research from the National Literacy Trust shows that one in 11 children and young people in Hastings do not own a book. The research also shows that the more books a child owns, the more likely they are to do well at school and be happy with their lives.

Children will be able to choose from a fantastic range of fiction and non-fiction books. They will  include novels like The Restless Girls by Jessie Burton, Paper Towns by John Green, Max Champion and the Great Race Car by Alexander McCall Smith and Odd and the Frost Giants by Neil Gaiman and Chris Riddell.

The National Literacy Trust Hub in Hastings is also launching a festive writing competition, challenging primary school pupils in Years 3 to 6 (aged 7-11) to write a seasonal short story set in Hastings. Pupils will have the chance to win signed books, signed illustrations and other book-themed goodies for themselves, plus book bundles and merchandise for their school library.

Writing tips and the downloadable competition entry sheet can be found at The competition will close on Monday 23 December 2019 and will be judged by Hannah Rolls, Editorial Director of Children’s Education at Bloomsbury.

Graeme Quinnell, Manager of the National Literacy Trust Hub in Hastings, said:
“We are so excited to be working with Bloomsbury to gift this huge Christmas present to children in Hastings. We know that children who have books of their own enjoy reading more, do better at school and are happier with their lives, so we want to make sure that every child in Hastings gets the chance to go on a reading adventure with their very own book over the festive season.

“We’re also looking forward to reading all of the fantastic short stories in our Christmas writing competition! From Santa playing mini golf at Hastings Adventure Golf to Rudolph indulging in some fish and chips on the seafront, we can’t wait to find out how Hastings features in children’s festive stories!”

Nigel Newton, Chief Executive, Bloomsbury Publishing, said:
“It gives us enormous pleasure to partner with the National Literacy Trust in providing the Christmas gift of a book to children in Hastings. Our ambition is to help the National Literacy Trust with their work to enable every child, along with their parents, to discover the joy of reading and all the benefits that can bring; something we at Bloomsbury are dedicated to.”

The partnership between the National Literacy Trust Hub in Hastings and Bloomsbury Publishing launched this summer with a town-wide ‘Drop Everything and Read’ event on Friday 12 July. Leading Bloomsbury authors, local children, young people, businesses and community members all participated by stopping what they were doing at 2pm to read for 10 minutes.

Bloomsbury entered into the three-year partnership with the National Literacy Trust to inspire a love of reading in primary school children in Hastings that will support them into secondary education; to increase the aspiration of primary school children with regards to the world of work; and to support adults who have literacy challenges to overcome the barriers of accessing support to improve their literacy skills.

Find out more about the National Literacy Hub in Hastings at



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Posted 14:46 Tuesday, Nov 26, 2019 In: Hastings Bookchat

Also in: Hastings Bookchat

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