We have launched a new mini-library at New Park Primary!

Located at New Park Primary Academy on Skipton Road, the mini-library is part of the Festival’s wider scheme. It already supports mini-libraries on board Transdev’s Number 36 buses to encourage reading in the wider community. Two mini-libraries are currently located outside the Festival office on Cheltenham Parade, as well as within Harrogate’s new social spot, Cold Bath Brewery.

Books can be accessed throughout the day, with both children and adults encouraged to take and donate a book.

The mini-libraries build on Harrogate International Festival’s legacy of promoting reading and literacy. The arts charity also hosts an annual Big Read, supported by Arts Council England, in libraries across the North bringing bestselling authors to hard-to-reach audiences, and delivers the Big Write, a giant creative writing workshop, for schoolchildren across the district.

Mr Mold, Headteacher at New Park Primary Academy, said: “We’re really excited and grateful to be the first Harrogate school with a mini-library. Our curriculum is built upon a love of books and reading. We immerse children in the books that we read and put reading at the heart of all that we do. We’re thrilled to be working in partnership with HIF and to be able to offer books freely to parents and carers at New Park.”

New Park Primary is part of Northern Star Academies Trust. The school was rated good by Ofsted in September 2018 and made headlines for being the most improved school in Harrogate as well as opening a school farm in October.

Beth Walker, Marketing & Communications Coordinator at Harrogate International Festivals, said: “We’re beyond delighted to open our first mini-library in a school. One of our ambitions in our year-round outreach work is to support and encourage children to fall in love with reading. It’s a passion that can carry individuals throughout life.”

The mini library scheme builds on the Festivals’ reputation for positioning Harrogate as a book lovers’ destination. Harrogate was claimed the ‘UK’s most bookish town’ in the national press last year thanks to its world-class literary festivals.