Bringing the outdoors inside at Cramlington school

A school has given its library a dramatic new look, thanks to the design talents of its caretaker.

By David Sedgwick
Friday, 22 February, 2019, 10:03
The new look woodland-themed library at Hillcrest School in Cramlington.

A special event was held to mark the opening of Hillcrest School’s newly transformed library.

Pupil Evie Carroll, 14, was joined by chairman of governors Joyce Reid and school caretaker Mark Bainbridge to officially open the new-look feature.

The project was carried out by Mark, who asked the pupils what they would like their library to look like and even created an ideas book with one of them.

Mark said: “The students were keen to bring the outdoors in so we opted for a woodland theme.

“It was important to get their views as they are the ones who are going to be spending their time in there.

“My aim was to make it an enjoyable and relaxing place to be for the students.

“It’s been really great to see how much they enjoy visiting the library now.”

The new-look library follows a recent drive at the Cramlington school to raise the profile of reading among its students.

And staff say they are delighted with the facility, adding that it has really enthused the young learners to pick up a book and get reading.

Children now earn Reader of the Week prizes, help each other with their reading and spend quality time in the library.

The school council is also consulted regularly about the types of books pupils would like to see in their library, and the school will be working closely with Cramlington Library in the town.

Evie said: “I love reading so much and the library is so good now. I love it.”

Mark Phillips, deputy headteacher, is delighted with the new-look library, as well as the initiative to boost reading in the school.

He said: “Reading for pleasure is more than just picking up a book. It promotes a love of language, stimulates thinking and encourages good communication.

“It is so enthusing in such a digital world that our learners still get great satisfaction from sharing a book with a friend.

“Our school library ensures that learners can relax, enjoy and be motivated to get lost between the pages.”

He added: “Staff at Hillcrest know that to enjoy reading you need to find a place you find comfortable.

“Our library provides a haven where learners can really find a passion for a good book.”