Oxford High School was very proud to once again host and sponsor the Oxfordshire Book Awards Ceremony – a literary extravaganza of reading and voting from the children of Oxfordshire. The Oxfordshire Book Award event brings together the school community of Oxfordshire to celebrate their love of reading. Oxford High has hosted this for several years now and last week’s event (brilliantly organised by our Librarian Frances Stott) was as big and buzzy as ever with over 40 participating schools from across both the city and the county. The event brings together an eclectic mix of authors and delivers a powerful message about the importance of reading for pleasure.
Special guest David Baddiel amused the audience with readings from his books, and delighted everyone (including Dr Hills!) with a few selfies. He was extremely touched by a review of his Junior Category winning book ‘The Person Controller’, read by pupils from St Nicholas School, Marston. Jo Cotterill, our Secondary Category winner for ‘A Library Of Lemons’ won the hearts of the children and adults alike and is always a passionate, local supporter of these events. Ellie Irving, longlisted for the 2018 Junior Category, gave a powerful account of the importance for women to ensure their rightful claims to scientific ideas and inventions – the inspiration behind her book ‘The Matilda Effect’.
Pam Smy intrigued the crowd with her illustrations and thoughts on her journey to writing and illustrating ‘Thornhill’, longlisted for the 2018 Secondary Category and local fantasy writer Ian Johnstone related how Oxford’s literary heritage has helped to inspire his writing, with ‘The Mirror Chronicles’ – a story that began in his imagination many years ago. The Lord Mayor of Oxford was a Guest of Honour and the event was supported by The Story Museum, Blackwells, Browns Books for Students, Waitrose, the Bartlett Trust, Heritage Cirqa and Renaissance.