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3-2-1- Blast Off! Children Invited to Join Out of this World Space Chase at Reading Libraries

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Reading libraries are calling for children to sign up to read six books this summer as part of a space themed Summer Reading Challenge 2019, which blasts off on Saturday 13th July.

The free reading challenge aims to get more children reading over the summer period – a time when children’s literacy skills traditionally dip. Children are challenged to borrow and read at least six books over the holidays, and are rewarded for each book read.

Space Chase

This year’s Space Chase theme is an out-of-this-world adventure inspired by the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing. This summer children will help the super space family track down books nabbed by mischievous aliens! As they read library books, they will solve clues and collect special stickers to complete their mission folder. Can they find the aliens in time to save the day?

Certificates & Medals

Successful children will also be presented with a special certificate and a medal.

Councillor Karen Rowland, Lead Councillor for Culture, Heritage and Recreation, said: “We know children’s reading can ‘dip’ during the long summer holidays if they don’t have regular access to books and encouragement to read for pleasure – and this can be a problem for schools to put right in the new term. This is a great, free way for youngsters to keep on reading, while having fun with Reading Library Service’s jam packed programme of events. I remember fondly summer reading programmes from when I was a child and they instilled in me a love of reading that I still have to this day.

“Last year’s extremely popular summer reading challenge saw over 1,700 children between the ages of 4 – 13 taking part. I’m really excited by this year’s space theme to mark the 50th anniversary of the moon landings and I’m eager to see as many youngsters as possible join in with this year’s space challenge and make use of their local library this summer.”

Summer Reading Challenge

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Summer Reading Challenge. The event has been running since 1999.  In Reading 1,717 children between the ages of four and 13 took part in last year’s Mischief Makers Beano themed challenge. This year’s challenge launches on Saturday 13th July, with a whole programme of events and activities planned in libraries across Reading, for families over the summer period. A full timetable of activities will be available at:

For more information on how to take part, please contact your local library. Please note that Battle Library in west Reading is temporarily closed for transformation work, reopening in September 2019 with a new flexible community space.  To take part in the challenge please head to Central library or one of the other libraries in Reading:

Find out more about Battle’s transformation at

Volunteers Needed

The library is also looking to recruit volunteers aged 14-18 who they will provide with training, guidance and support. The teenage volunteers would work across all local library branches, encouraging children with their reading and helping to run events and craft activities. Find out more at