Derby Book Festival appeal for children’s books

Derby Book Festival appeal for children’s books

Derby Book Festival and Marketing Derby are appealing to local residents to have a rummage for any children’s books that are no longer needed and are lurking in cupboards at home.  These will be provided to less fortunate children in the city who may not have books at home.  The appeal is launched to coincide with this year’s Festival, which will be held from 19 – 27 May which Marketing Derby supports each year as do many of its Bondholders.

One of the Festival’s key aims is to encourage a new generation of readers and they firmly believe that it’s never too young for children to start to enjoy books, whether it’s listening to stories read to them or looking at the vibrant pictures.

Not every child in the city is lucky enough to have books at home or to regularly visit the city’s libraries.  They are therefore launching an appeal to Derby’s residents to have a clear out at home and collect up any of your previously loved, but now unwanted, children’s books, ideally for under sevens.  

The only criteria is that the books should be in good condition to be passed on  – consider whether you would be happy to snuggle up close to your child or grandchild to read the book with them?          

Marketing Derby has kindly offered the Festival use of the Derby City Lab in St James’ Street during this year’s Festival.  We are inviting you to pop into the Lab between Tuesday 23 to Friday 26 May from 12 to 4pm where you can drop them off. 

The Festival, which is funded by the University of Derby and the Arts Council, with support from several local businesses, will work with local schools, nurseries and libraries to distribute the books to families who need them at home.

Liz Fothergill, Chair of Derby Book Festival said: “We work closely with schools in the city to support the development of a love of books and reading and our Festival activities, including our annual Meet the Author events, sponsored by Cosy, support this.  We know that not every child is lucky enough to have books at home and by making this appeal we hope to give every child in the city a book to take home to cherish.”

As well as the Meet the Author events for primary schools, which this year will include events with the Children’s Laureate, Joseph Coelho and award-winning writer and former Derby school teacher, Lesley Parr, the Festival runs its successful Derby Children’s Picture Book Award.  This year’s winner, voted for by six- and seven-year-olds in the city’s schools, is Human Town by Alan Durant and Anna Doherty.  Schools will enjoy virtual visits to 170 classes from Alan and Anna in June.

The Festival will also have a range of events and activities for children and families at this year’s Festival:

Saturday 27 May, 12noon – 4pm, The Big Book Bonanza, Deda and Chapel Street

Come along to enjoy lots of family fun exploring all things story and book related on the streets of Déda with our Big Book Bonanza!  Featuring crafts, children’s book fair, stalls, food and stories coming to life. There’ll be FREE street theatre shows with Book-Ends and What Happened to You?  (which features creative Audio Description and British Sign Language ensuring the show is accessible and inclusive.)  You can also join author and illustrator Jane Porter who will be leading FREE Collage Workshops throughout the event – please book for Jane's workshop by clicking here. Workshops at 12:45pm, 2pm and 3:15pm - For ages 3+ and their grown-ups. There will be a range of activities for different ages.  Derby Libraries will also be running their Storytime sessions at 1.30 and 3.30pm.

Tuesday 30 to Thursday 1 June, Fairy Tale Puppet Shows with AVP Theatre
For ages 3 – 5 and their parents, at libraries across the city – check website for details

FREE but book places for each show at the relevant library - places limited!

Join Amy from AVP Theatre for a delightful retelling of some traditional and some original fairy and folktales. All brought to life by Amy and a cast of mischievous puppets! Come along and find out what happens to the miller’s daughter and see if Hansel and Gretel can find their way safely out of the woods!

There’s an interactive story to end and the opportunity to come and meet some of the puppets!

Find out more about this year’s Festival at

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