Bookstart is the world's first national book-gifting programme. It aims to encourage a love of books, stories and rhymes in children from as young an age as possible.
Bookstart gives free books to every child in England and Wales before they start school and much more.
More information about Bookstart
Do you have your free Bookstart pack?
Every child in England is entitled to 2 free Bookstart packs. Each pack includes books to keep. It’s never too early to start reading with your baby. They’ve loved the sound of your voice even before birth. It’s also a great opportunity for you to spend time with your child.
You can get the first pack when your child is around 6–8 weeks of age, usually from your Health Visitor. You can get the second pack before your child starts school, usually from your child's nursery or preschool.
If your child doesn't go to nursery or preschool, or you didn't receive the first pack from your health visitor, please email us using the contact details on this page to request a pack.
Do you have your free dual language picture book?
Families with English as an additional language can claim an extra free book with their child's Bookstart pack.
This book is available in a number of languages including: Albanian, Arabic, Bengali, Bulgarian, Croatian, Farsi, French, Gujarati, Hindi, Lithuanian, Mandarin, Nepalese, Panjabi, Polish, Portuguese, Romanian, Somali, Spanish, Traditional Chinese, Turkish and Urdu.
Please contact your local library for more details on getting your free copy.
Do you have your free copy of Bear's Reading Adventure?
Children aged 0–5 can get a free storybook called Bear's Reading Adventure from any library in the borough.
What Bear's Reading Adventure is
Bear's Reading Adventure is a story which follows Bookstart Bear as he discovers new and exciting places to read.
The book was created specifically for families with children 0–5 years old and has been safety tested for babies. It contains tips on how to have fun reading together as a family every day.
Bear's Reading Adventure aims to encourage families to use the library regularly to develop a lifelong love of reading.
Collect 10 stickers to get your certificate
The storybook has 10 missing stickers for your child to collect.
Bookstart recommend children get their copy of Bear's Reading Adventure the first time they visit the library and then collect a sticker each time they visit the library after that.
When your child has collected all 10 stickers, they can download a certificate to celebrate their success.