As our reading group has confirmed, the UK has a wonderful heritage of writing and illustration for children and British children’s books are among the best known and most widely read in the world. Seven Stories is the National Centre for Children's Books, based in the beautiful Ouseburn Valley in the north-east of England at Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 2PQ. It describes itself as "custodian of a unique and ever-growing national archive of modern and contemporary children’s literature".
One of our book group members has recently made a contribution to the national collection at Seven Stories. She was excited to discover an incredible cache of beautiful, uncut printers' proofs of pages and book covers designed for (circa) 1930s children's painting and alphabet books in the loft of her Victorian house in Bath during building works. The pages were being used as lining underneath a layer of very old insulation material and had been spread out over the lathe and plaster between the beams. She contacted the Collections Director at Seven Stories, who was delighted to accept them.
If you would like to support the Seven Stories in building the collection and preserving our literary heritage, there are a number of ways to get involved. They're on Twitter as @7Stories and here's a link to their website.Seven Stories: UK National Centre for Children's Books