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The BBC’s year-long #LovetoRead season continues with programmes focussing on inspiring new generations of readers, expecially teenagers.  According to the BBC “Reading is one of life’s greatest joys and can awaken our imagination, inspire and challenge us – not just as children but throughout our lives” and it is therefore really important to find ways to encourage the next generation to continue to find joy in reading.


The #LovetoRead website features links to programmes already broadcast, to upcoming broadcasts on both radio and television and a selection of short clips. Here is a selection of some of the programmes currently available:


 The School that Got Teens Reading  BBC2 8pm, Sat 22 October

Actor and Comedian Javone Prince and presenter Helen Skelton have three weeks to convince a group of extremely resistant teenagers to enjoy reading books and that reading can be a life-long pleasure.


Live from Rochdale Central Library – Lauren Laverne   BBC 6 Music 10 am Friday 21 October

This edition of Lauren Laverne’s show will be broadcast live from Rochdale Central Library as part of the BBC’s #lovetoread campaign. Comedian and writer Mark Steel’s in conversation, and performance poet and beat-boxer Testament join Lauren to celebrate books, music & the spoken word.


Sleuths Spies and Socrcerers Andrew Marr’s Paperback Heroes   BBC4 pm 24 Oct and available on iPlayer

In this 3 part series, Andrew Marr deconstructs detective fiction, fantasy epics and spy novels – the books we really read. He unpicks their conventions to show how these books keep us turning the page. This second episode explores the conventions governing the Fantasy genre with contributions from authors such as Neil Gaiman and Alan Garner.


The Books that Made Britain    10 episodes available on BBC iPlayer

These programmes take the viewer on a journey of the great cities and landscapes that have inspired some of the nation’s most-loved books.  Each episode looks at how books have reflected and portrayed the different areas they are based in and how important this has been to the region.

For the episode Rebel Writers of The East Midlands, Radio 1 DJ Alice Levine will be in her hometown of Nottingham. The programme features three books which caused a sensation when they were first published – Saturday Night and Sunday Morning by Alan Sillitoe, The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole by Sue Townsend and Sons and Lovers by DH Lawrence.


Also available via the Love to Read webpage:


Reading: The Science and the Pleasure  originally broadcast on BBC Radio 4

“Michael Rosen talks about his first experience in reading, with Dr Laura Wright, and how and what he reads now. They’re joined by cognitive psychologist Professor Kathy Rastle to explain the amazing process by which we read, and to find out how fast the average reader reads, and how many words they know.”


The Secret Life of Sue Townsend Aged 68 ¾      BBC iPlayer

“Julie Walters narrates this extraordinary story of a working-class woman who achieved literary stardom through sheer talent and an irrepressible will to write. From Adrian Mole to The Queen & I, Sue Townsend’s books combine a brilliantly funny writing style with often biting satire, captivating not just a nation’s readers but influencing a generation of writers and performers.”