Year 6 pupils, Ruby Scott and Daniel Hill from Dashwood Banbury Academy were excited to be chosen to represent the school at the opening of a new library at Shirehampton Primary School in Bristol last week.

The library is the first in a series of 50 primary school libraries planned by the Primary School Library Alliance in partnership with the National Literacy Trust to mark the 2023 Coronation. It was fitting then, that it should be opened by Queen Camilla herself!

Her Majesty chatted to the children present about the books they enjoy, read stories aloud and engaged in other literacy-based activities.

Also in attendance at the celebration were children’s writing royalty: former children’s laureates Cressida Cowell and Malorie Blackman.

Joined by their teachers, Mrs Bunn and Miss Gooch, Ruby and Daniel took part in a special workshop where they worked with other pupils from schools from around the country, to design their dream library.

“We’re really lucky to have lots of brilliant books and a library with our tree sculpture in,” said Ruby, “but it would be fun to have a stream as well, or maybe some flying books!”


Vice Principal Annelise Gooch commented, “We are so proud of the confidence with which Ruby and Daniel conducted themselves around the Queen. We will have to see what Mrs Gordon-Weeks, our Principal, says about those creative ideas and whether we can get a stream running through the library at Dashwood!”

Queen Camilla is an avid reader and is keen to encourage young people to embrace reading. The event was her first solo engagement since the Coronation.