Youngsters celebrate completing reading challenge at Norwich library

Children who spent the summer expanding their imaginations by reading attended an awards ceremony at the Forum in Norwich.

Dozens of youngsters visited the state-of-the-art building with their parents after completing the Circus Stars themed Summer Reading Challenge, which saw each of them read six books.

More than 10,000 youngsters across the county took part in this year's challenge, which included circus workshops and events held in Norfolk libraries to encourage children to sign up and enthuse them about reading.

Children at the Forum, which houses the Norfolk and Norwich Millennium Library, were presented with certificates and medals to recognise their efforts by Shelagh Hutson, chairman of Norfolk County Council.

She said: 'It's wonderful because reading is the basic thing every child needs to be good at learning. To encourage reading, I'm in favour of it.'

Jennifer Holland, head of Norfolk County Council's library and information service, said: 'It's always a very popular activity and the theme this year has really appealed to a lot of children. There's evidence that the challenge helps children to keep reading and to retain their reading skills through the summer holidays. It's wonderful to have ceremonies like this to celebrate their achievements.'

Shelagh Hutson is pictured with children who had completed the challenge. PHOTO: SIMON FINLAY