We had a lovely little celebration at Hulme High St Library where 6yr old Elmo was presented with his winnings for being the overall Manchester Libraries Summer Reading Challenge Winner of 2022. The winner is chosen from a hat and Elmo was absolutely deserving of a prize for reading. Elmo’s mum told us that Elmo is a huge reader and lover of books. Alongside his younger siblings they visit the library every week, when Elmo has his swimming lessons, and he always takes his full quota of 8 books. Elmo reads, with his parents help, at least 3 picture books a day and there is always a chapter book on the go as well!

Elmo’s mum thought that Elmo was just coming into the library to pick up a certificate to say that Elmo had won the challenge! He was super excited. She was soooo shocked when he was presented with a goodie bag containing books and a £100 voucher to spend in a toy shop! Elmo got to show us his reading skills sounding out the words of the book titles. He was amazing! We loved meeting Elmo and his mum at the library. The whole family are big readers and love their local library. Elmo’s mum told us that when he was younger, the whole family gave up their possessions including their many books and went travelling for a bit. Since they have settled back in Manchester, they only buy special books as they realised that they could just use their local library and other Manchester Libraries for an even bigger selection of children’s books.

For anyone unaware, the summer Reading Challenge is a national programme that runs through libraries during the summer holidays. It encourages and supports children to keep reading during the break. In our libraries we create several competitions around it. For every 6 books a child reads once they are signed up to the challenge, they receive a submission into the main competition. So, the more you read the more chance you have of winning!

Before they left the library Elmo was delighted that he’d managed to persuade his mum to let him take out one of R L Stines, Goosebumps books, just in time for Halloween. I think he was just as excited by that, if not more, than being the winner of such brilliant prizes! Well Done, Elmo!!