School children in league with libraries for RLWC2013

School children from Garforth in Leeds received awards from local rugby league hero Jamie Jones-Buchanan at an event this afternoon to celebrate their work about Rugby League World Cup 2013 (RLWC2013).

The pupils from Strawberry Fields Primary and East Garforth Primary took part in a special project organised by Garforth Library to celebrate RLWC2013 coming to Leeds. The schools have been working in their classes to find out more about all the nations taking part in the tournament, and also attended the library for special RLWC library skills sessions.

Today’s event was a celebration of the work that the children have produced, much of which is on display in Garforth Library. In addition, Jamie Jones-Buchanan awarded prizes to the children and talked to them about his life, reading and rugby. Popular children’s author Tom Palmer was also there to entertain the 100-strong audience of youngsters with his rugby reading game. As the author of the children's rugby story, Scrum!, Tom has been working on the Try Reading initiative with local libraries to promote literacy in the build-up to RLWC2013.

Councillor Lucinda Yeadon, executive member responsible for leisure and skills said:

"Leeds Library Service has done a tremendous amount of work around RLWC2013, engaging with fans of the sport both young and old, to encourage them to pick up a book and get reading.

"Jamie Jones-Buchanan is an inspirational local figure, and has been a terrific ambassador for the region’s Try Reading scheme, so I'm delighted that he was able to attend this event to recognise the work that this group of children has produced to celebrate Leeds’ role in this global sporting event.

"We have also been really lucky to have had Tom Palmer take part in many events in the city promoting reading and rugby league to young children, and encouraging them and their families into their local libraries.

"Leeds is tremendously proud to be a host city for RLWC2013, and with only four days to go until we host our first game at Headingley Carnegie Stadium, the timing of this celebration couldn’t be better!”

Jamie Jones-Buchanan said:

"If RLWC2013 has encouraged more young people to think about reading and using their local library, then I think that's a fantastic result! When I was young I used to see people reading, usually girls, and wish that I could read like them. Now I read with my three sons as often as I can. It’s important to make time for reading – it’s like food for the soul. My life is more rounded now because of reading.”

Tom Palmer said:

“RLWC2013 has been a fantastic focus to encourage children to improve their reading and writing skills, and the work produced by these children is of a really high standard.”


Additional info

The Try Reading project is funded with an award from the National Lottery supported £6 million Grants for the Arts libraries fund. It is among the first projects to have received an award through this fund and it recognises the positive connections that can be made between sport and the arts. For further information about Try Reading visit www.rlwc2013.com/community_initiatives/try_reading or www.tryreading.org

Tickets for the RLWC2013 games on 8 and 15 November are available from the ticket office at Headingley Carnegie Stadium and the Leeds Visitor Centre at Leeds Railway Station. People buying tickets for both games can benefit from the Leeds Double Match offer, which means that when a ticket to one of the games is purchased, a ticket for the second game is then available to buy at half price. Ticket prices start at just £10 (£5 concessions) for group games and quarter-finals.

Leeds Visitor Centre is open Monday 10am - 5.30pm, Tuesday to Saturday 9am - 5.30pm, Sunday 10am - 4pm. For more information please visit the website www.visitleeds.co.uk, email tourinfo@leeds.gov.uk, or telephone 0113 242 5242.

Tickets can also be purchased by visiting www.rlwc2013.com or by calling the 24 hour Ticket Hotline on 0844 847 2013.

For media enquiries, please contact;

Claire Macklam, Leeds City Council press office (07712) 214223

Email: claire.macklam@leeds.gov.uk