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Top honours for Turriff reader

By David Porter

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Young readers and creative children were honoured at a special event following a summer-long competition to encourage the love of literature.

Aberdeenshire Libraries Summer Reading Challenge awards children a sticker for each book read and a prize after reading six books or more.

Star Reader titles were awarded by each local library, with the overall Aberdeenshire Star Reader title going to ten-year-old Finlay Watson, a regular at Turriff Library.

Winners took home certificates and a medal produced on a 3D printer.

Finlay also received prizes donated by Mackie’s of Scotland - a £100 book gift card and a year’s supply of ice cream.

Marketing Director at Mackie’s of Scotland, Karin Hayhow said: “We’d like to congratulate the talented winners and all those who took part.

“Regular reading is such an important part of a child’s development, so we’re very proud to support a local challenge that’s helping the next generation get excited about reading as they let their imagination take them on a journey with each page they turn.”

Winners in the Creative category were also awarded prizes for their bookmark designs at the awards event, held at Aberdeenshire Council’s headquarters on Saturday.

Four winners were selected from over 100 entries submitted over the summer holidays.

Four-year-old Elspeth (Inverurie Library) won the creative competition pre-school category with her interpretation of book characters such as the Gruffalo; Jakob, aged eight, (Peterhead Library) was successful in the P1 to P4 category with an entry which depicted his dinosaur themed bookmark; 10-year-old Bonnie (Cairnbulg Library) took the honours in the P5 to P7 category with her science themed bookmark; and the fourth winning entry was from 12-year-old Isla (Inverurie Library) with a quote “Books fall open and you fall in”.

The awards event also featured an author talk by David MacPhail, who writes funny books and historical fiction for children. David’s Thorfinn the Nicest Viking series has been particularly successful.

Chair of the Live Life Aberdeenshire sub-committee, David Cook, said: “Everyone, especially the children, had a fantastic morning celebrating all things to do with books and reading.

“It is wonderful to see so many children enjoying reading during their summer holidays and making use of their local libraries.

“Reading is the building block for so much of education and encourages an active imagination and curiosity which allows children to be successful independent learners.”

Sub-committee vice chair, councillor Anne Simpson, said: “The Summer Reading Challenge is a very popular annual event and one which shows the importance of the library service in our communities.

“We were very impressed by all the winners and hope they continue to enjoy reading, learning and using our services for the rest of their lives.”

A total of 4485 children signed up for the Challenge this year, up seven per cent on last year (4137 sign-ups). 298 more children took part this year.

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