Worcestershire County Councils Libraries and Learning have teamed up with the National Trust in Croome last weekend to celebrate the launch of this year's Summer Reading Challenge.
Over 1100 people, more than double the amount of visitors from last year, came along to a packed day of activities at National Trust Croome, near Pershore for the launch of this year's Summer Reading Challenge, Record Breakers,
The Summer Reading Challenge is a national initiative, co-ordinated by The Reading Agency, which encourages children aged 4-12 to read six or more library books during the school summer holidays, whilst offering incentives along the way.
Every year there is a new theme and this year the Summer Reading Challenge has teamed up with Guinness World Records - the global authority in record-breaking achievements and publisher of the annual Guinness World Records™ book – to establish a “Record Breakers” themed Challenge.
In total over 560 children have signed up to the Challenge across the county.
Families had the chance to take part in puppetry performances and workshops, family trails around the parkland as well as the opportunity to meet celebrity children's author Cathy Cassidy. They also had the chance to explore the new Schools Library Service mobile library, which resulted in 304 books being borrowed- an increase of 80 from last year.
Cllr Lucy Hodgson, Cabinet Member for Localism and Communities, said: "It was great to see our library staff and volunteers signing up so many children at Worcestershire's Summer Reading Challenge launch on Saturday. The event provided a wonderful opportunity for families to be introduced to the Libraries and Learning Service and to enjoy a range of activities engaging children with storytelling and reading".
Rachel Sharpe, Local Partnerships Officer for the National Trust: "It was great to work with Worcestershire's Libraries and Learning team on Saturday, and to welcome so many families for the first of three Summer Reading Challenge partnership events taking place at Croome this summer. These events are an exciting opportunity for us to build our younger audience and introduce children, mums, dad’s, carers, nans and granddads to this very special place and it’s fascinating history! We are looking forward to welcoming families back again at the end of July."
The second event at Croome Park with celebrity poet Lemn Sissay MBE takes place on Wednesday 29 July and the final event is on Wednesday 26 August with author John Dougherty
The Summer Reading Challenge continues until 19 September. Anyone who wants to sign up to the free Challenge can do so at their local library.