Actress Emilia Fox has vowed to return to a primary school after visiting pupils as part of the Evening Standard’s Get London Reading campaign.
The Silent Witness star read with 11 children from years five and six at Hargrave Park Primary School in Archway, watched by teachers and volunteers from literacy charity Beanstalk.
Bookworm: Emilia Fox and the year five and six pupils she read with at Hargrave Park Primary School, Archway (Picture: Glenn Copus)
She took turns with the children to read Flat Stanley by Jeff Brown and gave them “a group hug for doing so well”.
The actress said she loved reading with the pupils, adding: “Let’s make it a regular thing. In January, the new term, can I come back?”
“You might find me as the new librarian,” she joked.
The Londoner said she was a keen reader herself, adding: “I’m sure there’s something about stories that made me become an actor.”
Fox, 40, who has appeared in TV dramas, plays and films including The Pianist and David Copperfield, said she reads regularly for her work as an actress and with her daughter Rose.
“Reading is something I’m passionate about and always have been since I was a little girl,” she said.
“I’ve got a little girl who’s four now and it’s part of our daily routine where it’s me and her, or her and her dad. She’s very good with reading and remembering sentences.”
She said her favourite book as a child had been The Ordinary Princess by M.??M. Kaye, which she offered to read to the pupils next time.
The Get London Reading campaign, which is supported by e-book publisher NOOK, has helped more than 2,300 children at 280 schools.
Fox said she was worried that books might “get lost” due to other media and because “everything is so visual now”.
But using an e-reader at the event had been “cool”, she said, as it combined reading and technology and helped to “unite” the children as they read out loud.
Some pupils said they were nervous about reading to the actress. Jodie Camplin, 10, said: “I like to read. It’s a big deal to read in front of a celebrity and I really enjoyed it.” Jada Bernard, 10, said: “She [Fox] is really good at reading and really knows how to give good expression in her reading.”
We are looking for more people to volunteer as Beanstalk reading helpers. Please call 020 7729 4087 or visit www.beanstalkcharity.org.uk.