Thousands rise to 2023 reading challenge!

More than 19,000 Hampshire children signed-up for this year’s Summer Reading Challenge - up 11% compared to 2022 - and read over 73,000 books

Oct 6 2023

The hugely popular annual challenge, supported through Hampshire’s libraries, encourages children, aged 4 to 11 years old, to read six books over the summer break. This year's ‘Ready, Set, Read!’ theme was a celebration of sports and games and helped to promote the importance of health and wellbeing, as well as a love of reading.  

Hampshire County Council's Executive Member for Education, Councillor Steve Forster, said: "It’s fantastic that even more Hampshire children have enjoyed this year’s Summer Reading Challenge. I am really impressed by the number of books they have read between them – that was no mean feat! Reading is vital for improving knowledge and developing imagination and libraries and schools play a pivotal role in this by providing access to books and resources.  

“I also want to thank the staff and volunteers who run the challenge at our libraries every year, helping to nurture young minds, cultivate creativity and foster a lifelong love for learning and play that is important for health and wellbeing, now and in the future.” 

Children who take part in the challenge collect stickers to add to their special Summer Reading Challenge collector card and those who complete the challenge receive a certificate and a sustainable medal made of carved wood. Every child who signed up was entered into a prize draw to win a Samsung Galaxy tablet.  

The Summer Reading Challenge is a national initiative that takes place each year in libraries across the UK. In Hampshire, 19,326 children registered this summer and read 73,431 books in total. Local volunteers dedicated 6,599 hours to helping make sure the challenge was a success. 

For more information about the range of regular activities on offer at Hampshire Libraries visit the events website.