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Wirral School Children 'get on board' with station book exchange


26 June 2018

Primary school children, from Hoylake, are taking part in a special adoption programme with their local train station, to help encourage more people to read.  

As part of their new role, the pupils, from Hoylake Holy Trinity C of E, have taken charge of the community book exchange scheme, which is in operation at Manor Road Station.  

The book exchange was set up by local author Charlie Lea, from Read Now, Write Now, in conjunction with rail provider, Merseyrail.

There are now five book exchanges in operation on the Wirral line including Hoylake, Manor Road, Meols, Port Sunlight and Bebington. 

 This is the start of an exciting new chapter for the children and they are the first school to enrol in the special adoption programme.

As well as organise donations, the pupils in year six have also been making regular visits to the station to restock the community book shelf and are helping to keep the area tidy. 

Speaking about the partnership, book exchange founder, Charlie Lea, said: “I set up the book exchange with Merseyrail as I wanted to encourage more people to read with the idea that we could bring books to people, rather than people going to libraries and a train station was an ideal place given that so many people read on the train. 

“I am absolutely delighted that the students have come on board to help look after the Manor Road exchange as it means they can really take ownership of this and make a real difference to their local community by enriching the lives of others through literacy.”

Sally Ralston, corporate responsibility manager at Merseyrail, said: “Education is a key commitment in our Community Involvement Strategy which is why we are passionate about implementing schemes which allow us to give back to the local communities in which we operate. The book exchange not only helps to improve literacy, it also makes commuters’ journeys more pleasurable. 

“The adoption programme will allow us to move the scheme forward, so we can increase the number of exchanges across our network, and we encourage any other schools or organisations who are keen to get involved, to get in touch with us.”

 Mrs Catriona Schorah, Teaching Assistant, at Hoylake Holy Trinity C of E, said: “The children are delighted to have adopted the book exchange at Manor Road station. They are really enjoying the visits there and have been busy designing posters to decorate the shelves. 

It is really important as it’s not just encouraging our children to read, but to also take pleasure in getting others to as well.”