July 31, 2017
Burnham and Highbridge libraries launch summer reading challenge

Local children are being invited to join an 'Animal Agents' themed reading challenge at Burnham-On-Sea and Highbridge libraries.

Children can sign up for the libraries' Summer Reading Challenge 2017, which asks 4-11 year olds to borrow and read any six library books during the summer holidays, a time when children’s literacy skills traditionally dip.

This year’s theme is Animal Agents, based on a detective agency staffed by all kinds of clever animals – furry, scaly and slippery – who are out to crack a case at the library with a little help from their friends.

Tony Ross, the UK’s best-selling children’s illustrator (creator of the Little Princess books, illustrator of the Horrid Henry series by Francesca Simon, and of books by David Walliams and Claire Balding), has created this year’s exclusive artwork.

To take part in Animal Agents, all children need to do is to head to their local library where they will be given a collector folder to keep a record of their reading journey.

As children read at least six library books over the summer, they collect stickers which will help them crack the clues and help the Animal Agents find out what's really been going on behind the scenes!

Animal Agents launched in the two local libraries on 15th July and runs until 9th September 2017.

There’s a whole programme of events and activities planned at Somerset libraries for families over the summer to celebrate the Summer Reading Challenge. Just contact your local library or go to to find out how to take part.

"We’d like to make this the best year ever and increase the number of children signing up and completing this year’s amazing Animal Agents Reading Challenge," said Nathan Crook, Library Supervisor at Burnham, Cheddar & Highbridge Libraries.

Sue Wilkinson, CEO of The Reading Agency, added: "At The Reading Agency, we believe that everything changes when we read and we know from our research how much fun families and children have when taking part in the Challenge."

"This year we hope the wonderful characters created for us by Tony Ross will inspire more children than ever to take part and make use of their local library throughout the summer and beyond."

The Reading Agency is the leading national charity inspiring people of all ages and backgrounds to read for pleasure and wellbeing. Working with partners such as the public library service, our aim is to make reading accessible to everyone. The Reading Agency is funded by the Arts Council.

The Reading Agency runs the annual Summer Reading Challenge in partnership with the Society of Chief Librarians. This national reading for pleasure programme is now in its 19th year.

Last year over three quarters of a million children across the UK took part by borrowing, reading and talking about their favourite books.


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