The Brompton Blog – July 2013

Brompton Library
Brompton Library

Hello, hola, ciao, as-salām ‘alaykum, cześć

My name is Christian and I work at as a Senior Customer Services Assistant at Brompton Library. On behalf of all the staff here we welcome all our customers and readers from around the world to the latest edition of The Brompton Blog.

For those of you who don’t know Brompton Library, we are a medium-sized library eight minutes walk from Earls Court tube station. Local residents, people who work nearby, students and tourists all use Brompton Library – we have something for everyone.

Christian Stevens
Christian Stevens

Christian Stevens

Senior Customer Services Assistant

The Summer Reading Challenge and Chatterbooks

Creepy House banner
Creepy House banner

We’ve had a great start to the Summer Reading Challenge this year –  over sixty children have already signed up to take part and three children have already finished. This means they have read and talked about six books with library staff. More information about this summer reading scheme ( as well as lots of exciting summer events) can be found on our Summer Reading Challenge webpage.

Chatterbooks
Chatterbooks

I told the children who came to our last Chatterbooks reading group all about the Summer Reading Challenge and I encouraged them all to take part.  The children like the ‘creepy’ theme and really enjoyed doing a Creepy House word search.

Our next Chatterbooks meeting will be on Monday 16 September. If you’d like your child to to come along please speak to a  member of library staff. There’s also more information on our Chatterbooks webpage.

Babita Sinha
Babita Sinha

Babita Sinha

Senior Customer Services Assistant

Premier League Reading Stars at Brompton Library

Premier League Reading Stars logo
Premier League Reading Stars logo

In our May 2013 blog post I wrote about the Premier League Reading Stars (PLRS) scheme we’ve been hosting at Brompton Library with children from one of our local schools, St Cuthbert with St Matthias. We’ve had a “fixture” every Tuesday after school for the last ten weeks.

Rob Symmons, from Chelsea library, and I have been delivering football-themed activities with the goal of improving the children’s literacy skills and embedding an enthusiasm for reading. It’s been an interesting learning experience for us as well as the kids with some yellow cards handed out along the way but, at the final whistle, we’re all over the moon that the season has now ended! (Apologies for the high number of footballing clichés in that last sentence!)

In mid-June we had an away fixture at Queens Park Rangers Football Club who supported PLRS for the second year running. Jesse Foyle, QPR’s Education Manager, gave us a behind-the-scenes tour of the ground and then sprang a quiz on our players. It was a big ask but they rose to the occasion.

Our final fixture allowed us to celebrate the children’s achievements with their proud parents and families – each child gets a certificate and we had party food and drinks. By the time you read this I can honestly say – they think it’s all over, it is now!

Stephanie Webb
Stephanie Webb

Stephanie Webb

Lending Librarian

The Brompton Blog – May 2013

Brompton Library
Brompton Library

Hello and welcome to the May edition of the Brompton Library blog. A recap for those new to us – we are located just 7 minutes walk from Earl’s Court tube station, our medium-sized library caters for a wide variety of people and offers many learning resources:

  • Wide selection of books including fiction, non-fiction, graphic novels, children’s and young adult
  • Language courses
  • Audio-books and large-print titles
  • Newspapers and magazines
  • Travel guides and Ordnance Survey maps
  • Computers with scanning and printing facilities
  • Free wi-fi
  • Colour photocopier
  • Digital library
  • Children’s story-time and singing sessions
  • Fortnightly coffee mornings (age 50+)

  If you would like to join the library all you need is some identification with proof of UK address. The membership process takes only five minutes and once you are registered you will have access to all of our libraries across the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.

 In addition to all of these resources there are a multitude of events and groups that meet on the first floor. Our meeting room can be hired for public and corporate events and there is also a separate learning space that features a projector with screen, ten desktop computer terminals, a scanner and colour photocopier.

Here are some of the groups and activities that meet here:

  • Tai-Chi and pilates classes
  • Job seeking support and advice club for those with learning difficulties
  • Reading groups for adults and children
  • Councillor surgeries
  • ESOL classes
  • Bibliotherapy sessions
  • Housing advice sessions
  • IT for beginners classes

 There’s more  information about our meeting room on our website.

 Go outside!

'Go Outside' book display
‘Go Outside’ book display

Customer Services Assistant, artist, musician and Norwich City supporter David Bushell has created a display of books to inspire people to get outdoors and become involved in activities.

Katie’s Corner

Brompton Library’s reading group read ‘The Sense of an Ending’ by Julian Barnes for their May meeting.

The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes
The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes

It is about a man called Tony who is left a mysterious bequest by an ex-girlfriend’s mother. This leads him back into the days of his adolescence and university life, of four boys hanging out together, one of whom was Adrian, a dazzlingly brilliant person, destined for greatness. As Tony digs deeper into his past he uncovers more and more about the ‘missing years’ and how that compares to his rather conventional life.

Having read this book for the second time I was keen to know what the others thought about it. My first impression of Tony was that he was a rather chinless, useless character who set out to achieve great things but had quite a banal life. Reading it on the second occasion offered me the chance to change my opinion about him; I actually felt more sympathy for Tony this time round. One reader really felt that the behaviour of the young men at school and university only furnished her view that men were the cause of most of the world’s problems, so misguided and dreadful they were. Most really loathed Veronica (one of Tony’s girlfriends) and her very snobbish family, whose dad and brother did their best to make him feel uncomfortable.

What we all agreed upon was that the book started out like something from ‘The History Boys’ by Alan Bennett but then became absorbed with the Tony in later life and this slow build-up to a real bombshell, you could feel it from the few clues that were scattered about for Tony that it was going to be BIG.

I absolutely loved this book – there is a kind of philosophy running through it – and it makes you ponder – how we all view historical events and who said what can be completely blown out of the water. We are all imperfect and therefore history must be too.

Katie Collis
Katie Collis

Katie Collis

Senior Customer Service Assistant

World Book Night 2013

World Book Night books on display at Brompton Library
World Book Night books on display at Brompton Library

World Book Night is a celebration of reading and books which sees tens of thousands of passionate volunteers gift specially chosen and printed books in their communities to share their love of reading. World Book Night is celebrated on 23 April. In 2013 it was celebrated in the UK, Ireland and the USA.

 Before rushing up to Kensington Central Library on World Book Night, as a book-giver I had 20 copies of Rose Tremain’s The Road Home to distribute to  readers at Brompton Library.  I decided to try to give them to our customers who primarily use the library’s computers. 

At the end of the day there were only 2 copies left! And I gave these last copies to two of the teachers who came in with their classes the next day.

World Book Night is a good cause and it was great fun being involved with it.

Premier League Reading Stars

Premier League Reading Stars logo
Premier League Reading Stars logo

Premier League Reading Stars (PLRS) is a partnership between the National Literacy Trust and the Premier League to support hundreds of schools and libraries during 2012 and 2013.

At the beginning of the month, Rob Symmons from Chelsea Library and I finally played host to the first “fixture” in a season of ten PLRS sessions. A local school has selected 9 pupils who they have judged will benefit from this football-themed scheme to improve their literacy skills. It was with much trepidation that we approached this project, neither of us having had any previous experience of delivering what is really a lesson to a bunch of nine year olds but, of course, it turned out to be fine. Rob and I are on a steep learning curve but, at the end of the day, we were over the moon – no yellow cards and lots of goals!

Stephanie Webb
Stephanie Webb

Stephanie Webb

Lending Librarian

Bookstart Bear Club

Bookstart Bear Club logo
Bookstart Bear Club logo

At one of our Saturday Storyland sessions this month Senior Customer Services Assistant, Katie and Customer Services Assistant, Rahima introduced the Bookstart Bear Club.

They gave out membership packs which include a booklet to collect bear paw stamps for each of the children who visit the library for story or rhyme times. For each six stamps collected the children get a certificate.

They read bear stories to the children including ‘This is the Bear’ by Sarah Hayes and ‘Copycat Bear’ by Ellie Sandall.

Our colouring pictures were from the Bookstart website, and the children made a picture by sticking on balloon shapes with the bear.

Bookstart balloon picture
Bookstart balloon picture

There will be another story and craft session on Thursday 30 May at 10.30am; we are continuing the bear theme using ‘Goldilocks and the Three Bears’.

Chatterbooks 

Chatterbooks
Chatterbooks

This month the theme was spies and thrillers and true to its name it was packed with thrilling espionage activities. There were code making and code breaking puzzles, ideas for spy disguises and how to tell ‘goodie’ from a ‘baddie’.

 We discussed loads of books on this theme. There was a competition on drawing a spy gadget and the best gadget which won was the DNA matching revolver. The children were very enthusiastic and it was wonderful sharing their innovative ideas.

The children also enjoyed chatting about their favourite spies and there was no confusion in choosing Mr Bond unanimously.

Our next meeting is on Monday 10 June and the theme will be comics and humour.

 Babita Sinha and Ioanna Misdrakou