Little readers win voucher to buy books in Ipswich

Pupils from Ranelagh Primary School were in their element choosing books after they won £250 to spe

Pupils from Ranelagh Primary School were in their element choosing books after they won £250 to spend at an independent bookshop. Oscar chose Harry Potter. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

Pupils at an Ipswich primary school have been given free books thanks to a winning voucher. 

Ranelagh Primary School won £250 from the Siobhan Dowd Trust for their pupils to spend back in 2020 and have only just been able to take a trip to their local bookshop, Dial Lane. 

Pupils from Ranelagh Primary School were in their element choosing books after they won £250 to spe

Ava with her favourite book. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

Sue Dunn, assistant headteacher at Ranelagh Primary School, was "amazed" when the independent bookshop allowed the kids a discount so they could get more books for their school library and free titles. 

"It has been really tough so it was nice to have something positive to look forward to and it been a lovely feeling.," Ms Dunn said. 

Pupils were in their element choosing books after they won £250 to spe

Oscar from Ranelagh Primary School chose Harry Potter. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

The school also has a high percentage of children who do not have English as a first language, which Ms Dunn thinks emphasises the importance of reading for those pupils. 

Ms Dunn added: "We do have many children who do not have access to books at home and so we try to update our library with books that we feel will be relevant and interesting to our children as we strongly promote reading for pleasure at our school.

Pupils from Ranelagh Primary School were in their element choosing books after they won £250 to spe

Ranelagh Primary School's Nathaniel and Kristophers with their books. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

"Because of our needs, we are lucky to have been awarded £250 to spend on books at a local, independent bookshop."

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And the children were able to visit and choose the new books.

"Quite a few said they'd never been to a bookshop," added the teacher. "It was just lovely for those not used to books who could just flick through and browse. 

"English is an important focus for their future."

Pupils from Ranelagh Primary School were in their element choosing books after they won £250 to spe

Pupils from Ranelagh Primary School were in their element choosing books after they won £250 to spend at an independent bookshop - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

The excursion on Monday was also the first trip which the school has taken since Covid. 

"It was a bit difficult to get everyone there," she said. "But we've come back with four carrier bags full."

She is hoping to get the Foyle School Library Scheme where Ranelagh Primary School could win up to £10,000 for their school library. 

Pupils from Ranelagh Primary School were in their element choosing books after they won £250 to spe

Ranelagh Primary School's Alfie chose The Biscuit Factory. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

Ms Dunn added that the school does not really have the money to buy books with their budget so "it will be relying on more funding" to bolster their supplies.