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Read Manchester celebrates World Book Day with exciting library events

World Book Day marks its 20th anniversary this year and as the Read Manchester campaign continues, it’s set to be the city’s biggest celebration to date.

Schools across Manchester will enjoy fun reading activities and thousands of children will dress up as their favourite book characters on Thursday 2 March.

In the lead up to World Book Day, over 600 pupils from 13 schools will attend exciting author events in four of the city’s libraries.

Author-illustrator duo Knife and Packer will visit Withington, Gorton and Newton Heath libraries on Monday 27 February to run sessions with pupils from Old Moat Primary School, St Francis Primary School and St Wilfred's Primary School.

The following day (28 February), Maz Evans, author of Who Let the Gods Out? will be at Central Library to inspire pupils from nine different primary schools with a series of workshops.

As part of World Book Day, every pupil in the city will receive a special £1 book token, which can be exchanged for a World Book Day book or used to get £1 off a full price book. This year’s 10 titles include The Famous Five by Enid Blyton, Blob by David Walliams and Butterfly Beach by Jacqueline Wilson, illustrated by Read Manchester ambassador Nick Sharratt.

The Read Manchester campaign, run in partnership by Manchester City Council and the National Literacy Trust, promotes reading for enjoyment through a year-long programme of activities and events.

This year, Read Manchester is giving children across the city the chance to get their hands on an extra book, with 4,000 World Book Day titles given out at Manchester’s libraries. Book tokens will also be available for families who attend special Tiny Tots and Toddler Times sessions at libraries, which will be themed for World Book Day with dressing up and book-themed fun.

Executive Member for Culture and Leisure, Councillor Luthfur Rahman, said: "We're pulling out all the stops to mark this year's World Book Day with a fantastic range of free books, activities and author visits - all of which will help local children to get the reading bug at the earliest possible age."

National Literacy Trust Director Jonathan Douglas said: “It is fantastic to see so much activity going on across the city for the 20th World Book Day, which all supports our campaign to make Manchester a reading city. For many children, a World Book Day title will be the first book they own- our research shows that book ownership can have an important impact on their attitudes towards reading and wider attainment.”