Dennis the Menace and Gnasher lead the fight to keep children in Cornwall reading

Dennis the Menace and Gnasher are leading the fight to keep children reading across Cornwall this summer.

They are part of the Summer Reading Challenge 2018, which aims to get 4-11 year-olds to borrow and read at least six library books during the school holidays.

This year’s theme is Mischief Makers and has been inspired by the classic children’s’ comic Beano, which celebrates its 80th anniversary this year.

The challenge is designed to prevent children from experiencing a dip in their reading skills during the six-week break from school.

To take part, all children need to do is to visit their local library and sign up for the challenge.

They will then be given a colourful collector’s edition map of Beanotown.

No copyright infringement intended – owner cannot be identified.

As children read library books for the Summer Reading Challenge, they will receive special stickers, some with mysterious smells.

By adding these stickers to their map, young readers will help Dennis, Gnasher and friends solve clues and discover the treasure, having lots of fun and adventures along the way.

Last year, more than 8,000 children took part in the challenge across Cornwall, with 69% of participants reading at least six books.

Councillor Edwina Hannaford is Cornwall Council Portfolio Holder for Neighbourhoods. She has led the way on the devolution programme.

She said: “Our libraries allow communities to experience new ideas, can embed a lifelong love of reading and provide a place for communities to gather. That is only being enhanced through the devolution process, as individual libraries react to their local community’s needs. It is wonderful to see the latest Summer Reading Challenge being delivered through the network, and I hope this year will prove to be an even bigger success than previous years.”

Jayne Cardew is Senior Library and Information Assistant at Falmouth Library, which was the first Library and Information Service to transfer to a Town Council as part of devolution programme.

She said: “We had a really great year last year with more children taking part than in previous years but we are hoping that this year will be even better, it’s great to see the enjoyment that children still get from picking up a book and disappearing into it.”

The Summer Reading Challenge 2018 will begin in Libraries across Cornwall on Saturday, 14 July.

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