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Commissioner backs World Book Night with free books for custody detainees

Detainees in police custody in Cambridgeshire will be encouraged to read books as part of a national celebration of reading, it can be revealed.

Cambridgeshire Police and Crime Commissioner Sir Graham Bright has agreed to back World Book Night, a nationwide event which takes place on April 23 and sees volunteers handing out hundreds of thousands of free books across the UK to share the love of reading with those who do not read regularly.

As part of his support, the Commissioner has arranged for some of the county’s Independent Custody Visitors (ICVs) to hand out books to detainees in police custody to provide them with greater opportunity to read.

The ICVs regularly feedback that reading material in custody is often too long or in poor condition. The Commissioner’s support of World Book Night will see dozens of new books in two titles handed out within the county’s custody facilities to inspire detainees to read more regularly.

Commenting on the event, Sir Graham said: “We are delighted to be supporting World Book Night which highlights the benefits of reading and encourages people to become more confident with their choice of books.

“Our ICVs carry out a vital job in providing oversight of the condition of our custody facilities across the county and checking the welfare of detainees. Part of World Book Night’s ambition is to introduce reading to disadvantaged people or those who don’t usually own books so ensuring we provide more opportunities to read within our custody facilities seemed a natural choice.”

World Book Night is organised by The Reading Agency, a national charity inspiring people to become more enthusiastic and confident about reading to give them an equal chance in life.

This year, The Reading Agency sent almost a third of its 250,000 books to institutions around the UK and Ireland including prisons, schools, colleges, libraries and homeless groups to enable staff to share the power of reading.



Media Enquiries:    Sallie Blair – 01283 821012 / 07702 541401