Summer Reading Challenge reaches record number of children in Hertfordshire

PUBLISHED: 12:00 28 September 2016 | UPDATED: 12:00 28 September 2016

The Big Friendly Read launch event

The Big Friendly Read launch event


More than 20,000 youngsters took part in Hertfordshire County Council Library Service’s annual Summer Reading Challenge.

The Summer Reading ChallengeThe Summer Reading Challenge

At Welwyn Garden City library 847 children took part in this year’s theme, ‘The Big Friendly Read’, celebrating Roald Dahl’s best-loved books including ‘Charlie and the Chocolate Factory’, ‘Fantastic Mr Fox’ and ‘The BFG’.

The aim of the challenge was to encourage children to read six books from their library during the summer holidays and then come back to the library and talk about them.

All children who completed the challenge received Summer Reading Challenge wristbands, medals and certificates and were invited to special celebration events at their local libraries.

Teresa Heritage, cabinet member for public health, localism and libraries, said: “The Summer Reading Challenge was yet again a great success attracting more than 20,000 children.

The Big Friendly Read launch eventThe Big Friendly Read launch event

“All the children had a wonderful opportunity to discover a love of reading and develop a lifelong passion for great storytelling.”

Library staff were supported during the summer by over 400 volunteers. The majority were 14 to 24-year-old Reading Hacks, who signed children up to the challenge, talked with them about their books and celebrated their achievements with them.

Last year, 18,600 Hertfordshire children took part, making this year a record-winning event.

Children can discover more activities at

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