What’s on in North Somerset’s libraries?


There’s a lot happening across North Somerset’s libraries this month (October 2022), so here’s a round-up of some of the free events still to come – including over half term – that residents are invited to attend and can look forward to.

  • BookTrust Storytime Prize

North Somerset Libraries is supporting this year’s BookTrust Storytime Prize to find the best book for sharing with children aged five and under. This is run by BookTrust, the UK’s largest children’s reading charity.

The six books shortlisted have been sent to libraries. They are:

  1. Nature Trail written by Benjamin Zephaniah and illustrated by Nila Aye (Orchard Books).
  2. The Duck Who Didn't Like Water written and illustrated by Steve Small (Simon and Schuster Children's Books).
  3. The Horse That Jumped written and illustrated by Thomas Docherty (Farshore, Harper Collins).
  4. Can You Tickle A Tiger? written by Bobbie Brooks and illustrated by Carrie Hennon (Imagine That).
  5. Red Lorry, Yellow Lorry written by Michelle Robinson and illustrated by Jez Tuya (Andersen Press).
  6. Zoom: Farm Adventure written by Susan Hayes and Aviel Basil (What on Earth Books).

North Somerset Libraries hold regular Bookstart Rhymetimes and Storytimes for children aged five and under. During these events our experienced staff bring stories and rhyme to life through action rhymes, picture books, songs and music. The shortlisted Storytime Prize books will be read in sessions during October and November in libraries at Weston-super-Mare, the For All Healthy Living Centre, Worle and Pill. While at the library, families can also pick up a free special collector’s book for their child. Children can then collect rewards each time they visit a library while hunting for the Bookstart owls!

Families and library staff are invited to share their views on how much they enjoyed the books ahead of the winner being announced in May 2023. The winning author/illustrator will receive a £5,000 prize.

Find out more, including a calendar of events, here www.n-somerset.gov.uk/bookstartchildrenslibrary.

  • Black History Month

National celebrations will take place throughout the month to honour the too-often unheralded accomplishments of Black Britons in every area of endeavour throughout our history. In North Somerset, Black History Month book displays will be in Yatton, Portishead, Weston-super-Mare, The Campus, The Healthy Living Centre, and Nailsea libraries. Throughout October, North Somerset Council is also flying the Pan African Flag at its Town Hall and Castlewood offices.

  • Reading Well for Young People

Reading Well is a campaign by The Reading Agency to support people to understand and manage their health and wellbeing using helpful reading. A new selection of Reading Well for teens books has been available in all North Somerset libraries from Monday 10 October to coincide with the World Health Organisation’s World Mental Health Day. The reading list has been designed to help young people aged 13 to 18 with advice and information about issues like anxiety, stress, OCD and difficult experiences like bullying and exams. Reading Well books are all recommended by health experts, as well as people with lived experience of the conditions and topics covered.

  • Get Online Week

Taking place every year in October, Get Online Week is Good Things Foundation’s digital inclusion campaign that inspires people to do more online and helps them to learn how. This year the event, which takes place runs from Monday 17 to Sunday 23 October, is encouraging people to #tryonething. Helping people to get online is a priority for North Somerset Library Service all year round:

  • Family Learning Festival

This year’s national Family Learning Festival takes place between Saturday 15 and Sunday 30 October. Learning as a family helps children and adults to become confident, lifelong learners. It helps children develop essential skills and achieve at school and helps grown-ups to reconnect with learning and transform their lives. Family learning can help families tackle disadvantage and improve their life chances. Run by The Campaign for Learning, part of educational charity NCFE, the theme of this year's event aims to inspire a love of shared learning through curiosity. North Somerset Libraries have Reading Sparks boxes for loan, especially designed for children age 8 to 12 and their families. Containing a book to spark their imagination, and with themed scientific activities and equipment, these boxes are a fun way for children and families to get to grips with science through the proven power of reading. Themes to choose from include: Invisible Nature, The Moon, Animals and Simple Machines.

Councillor Mike Solomon, North Somerset Council's executive member for neighbourhoods and community services, said: "Wow! What a busy month October will be for our libraries. I’m always stunned by the high volume and quality of the free events and activities available to residents of all ages in our libraries. There really is something for everyone here. I really do hope that people will take the opportunity to pop into their local library to take advantage of all it has to offer. They’re a fantastic resource, especially helpful to families during half-term and in the current cost of living crisis.”

Libraries offer free books, eBooks, audio books, comics, resources, events and activities throughout the year – and it's free to join!

More information about events taking place in libraries across North Somerset, can be found on the council's website (www.n-somerset.gov.uk/libraries) and on social media accounts – Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.