Video: Doncaster Book Award finale has a happy ending

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Turning over a new leaf and delving deep into the world of books were hundreds of schoolchildren yesterday.

Waterdale’s Cast venue welcomed the tenth annual Doncaster Book Award which was attended by special guest authors Chris Bradford and Jonathan Meres.

The theme of this year’s award finale was “Page to Screen” and events leading up to the event included animation and dance workshops.

Among the organisers was school librarian Lyn Hopson who explained why the awards were important: “We need to do everything we can in this day and age to keep reading high profile and keep children enthusiastic about reading.

“We have organised a whole series of events this year culminating with today’s finale.”

This year’s book award winner in the ‘classic’ category was voted as The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien.

In the secondary section was Itch Rocks by Simon Mayo, and the primary winner was Jim Smith’s I Am Still Not a Loser.

Sixteen schools, including Hexthorpe Primary and Don Valley Academy, were represented at the event and it is estimated there were some 400 children involved altogether.

Winner of the review award was 15-year-old Abbie Mason of Don Valley Academy who has been taking part for the last three or four years.

She said the awards were “the best one I’ve been to yet”.

Author Chris Bradford has written two series of books, one is the Young Samurai and the other the Young Bodyguard, which youngsters were able to buy and get signed by him.

He said: “The Doncaster Book Award is very important as it encourages and excites children about reading.

“It’s about getting kids involved.

“It’s been a great effort and all the children have been involved.

“It is important that they got to meet us too, so they see the people behind what they are reading.”

LDBA chairman Lesley Hurworth said: “It’s been fabulous, vibrant and it’s brilliant to see children queuing to get their books signed and to see them being enthused about books in this way.”

Acclaimed authors speak to hundreds of schoolchildren

The tenth Doncaster Book Award was launched at Cast last October.

The theatre welcomed 600 children from 22 schools.

The theme this year is ‘From Page to Screen’

Guests at this year’s event were two highly acclaimed authors who attended the finals and spoke to the children about their work.

They are Jonathan Meres, whose “World of Norm” books are popular all over the country. Visit

Also, Chris Bradford, whose “Young Samurai” books are devoured by teen boy.

The first book in the series “Bodyguard” was long-listed this year.





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