Library Services for Schools - Cumbria's primary schools book award

Sign up for Spellbinding 2021!


We are pleased to announce our 2021 Spellbinding shortlist!

From the hundreds of brilliant books published during 2020, we have arrived at a shortlist of 11. It's up to pupils to vote for their favourite to win. The award is aimed at years 5 & 6, aims to introduce pupils to new authors and titles and creates enthusiasm and excitement about reading. It's not just for pupils that love reading, often we find it challenges reluctant readers too so why not get all your pupils involved!

Spellbinding will now start on the 8th March and will run into the summer term. Hills will be delivering your books, passports and stickers week beginning 22nd February. If you have any queries about Spellbinding please email

For further details download the flyer.

Spellbinding 2021 flyer (PDF 1.062mb)

Primary Spellbinding web site - participating children can log in and leave comments about their favourite books, visit author web sites or try out the activities and quizzes. The staff section includes book review templates, bookmarks and activity ideas to download.

"We would like to take part again as it really gets the children excited about reading different genres of books."  St Bridget's CE School Brigham

"We have done it since the beginning and think it is brilliant." Staveley CE School

"The year 5 children have taken part in the awards this year and have really enjoyed it. Their enthusiasm to read the books and talk about them has been fabulous to hear. Many of them have found books, that they wouldn't normally choose, to be great fun and this has given them the confidence to try new and different genres." Sacred Heart Catholic Primary School, Barrow.

"Once again our children are really enjoying the Spellbinding experience and it's lovely to see some "reluctant" boy readers actively involved." Victoria Academy, Barrow

"I was very impressed by a year 6 less able reader who persevered to read all 7 books and had a great sense of achievement. All the children who read 7 books were really proud of themselves."

"It certainly raised the profile of reading amongst the children and their parents."

"Children were introduced to other authors and this will lead them to read a wider range of genre."

"Part of our project allowed time for follow up and discussion which developed useful skills in thinking about reading and thinking beyond what they read."

"Many children commented on the fact that they wouldn't have selected some of the books if they'd seen them in the library, yet they were surprised by how much they enjoyed them."

"All the pupils seemed to enjoy the variety and the poorer readers were keen to have a go at the more complex texts."

"Our year 6 are really enjoying the selection - two "reluctant" readers both spotted at playtime reading their books!!."

"My class have really enjoyed taking part in such an exciting project and just before the lockdown happened, reading and discussing the books and rewarding stickers for passports was the highlight of our day"! Broomfield Primary, North Yorkshire