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Cllr Rev Ann Easter, Chaplain to the Queen, supports incentives to encourage reading

PUBLISHED: 10:32 12 October 2016 | UPDATED: 10:45 12 October 2016

Archant

One thing for which East Enders are known is surely our love of a good story!

Our children have enjoyed stories since their birth – family stories of when our cat got caught in the roof of the church and fairy stories of brave princesses saving the day; our own version of Goldilocks, where she leads the bears to freedom and opens the cottage in the wood as a holiday home for impoverished clergy as well as all the standard Thomas the Tank Engine and Dora the Explorer stories too.

My daughter-in-law tells of how she heard her son giggling and wondered what he was up to; she peered around the door to see him deep in a book – what a joy!

And now our youngest granddaughter has begun to read too; I was delighted to hear of Drop Everything And Read – DEAR – when her whole school spends the last 15 minutes of the day reading.

What a wonderful way to encourage children to love books – not to mention a few minutes peace and calm before the next challenge!

When you can read, the whole world is there to be explored; fantasy or fact, science or sport, you can learn so much about life in all its fullness from books, newspapers, magazines and electronically too (not the same as having the paper in your hand, of course, but so useful).

I’m delighted that, in Newham, we put an enormous amount of effort and resources into making sure that all our children can read and now, more and more residents discover that our libraries are no longer the hushed, fusty exclusive places that some people thought they were.

It’s great to see thousands of people coming into our libraries for community events and information about services and, while they’re there, our staff sign them up as book-borrowers too – brilliant!

But now, I must get back to my 50 Shades... More from Ann


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