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Accessibility & Translation

The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read

Monday, 24th May 2021

Quick Reads are back. The 2021 QR collection should be making its way to the LRC to be added to our ‘New Book’ display later this week. This initiative, currently organised by The Reading Agency, began in 2006 as a government funded scheme to improve the rate of adult literacy. Statistics indicate that around 1 in 6 adults (around 7.1 million people) in England have poor literacy skills, and that levels in Scotland and Northern Ireland are slightly higher with only Wales faring better. 

Irish author Roddy Doyle was already part of a scheme in Ireland that was attempting to bridge a very obvious gap that existed between reading material for children and full-blown novels for the adult reader. There had been no material suitable for the less confident reader and so too many people were liable to fall through the cracks. Reading for pleasure had become unobtainable. The scheme piqued the interest of Gail Roebuck, chair of Random Penguin House and she set about introducing a similar scheme to the UK, under the title Quick Reads. 

Quick Reads became a collaboration between a wide range of publishers, booksellers, libraries, literacy bodies and government departments. Since 2006 over 130 different books have been published. When government funding ran out in 2018, rather than see the scheme collapse, the author Jojo Moyes generously stepped in to provide additional funding for another 3 years.

The books are either shorter, easy to read versions of existing novels or specially commissioned stories, and all are from very well-known and established authors. Each book comes in at under 128 pages with easy to read content that is very much aimed at adults, making them very accessible for most reluctant readers.

A study in 2015 was carried out to see what are the benefits in reading for pleasure for adults. It came to the following conclusions.

Regular readers:

  • Had fewer feelings of stress and depression
  • Felt less lonely
  • Had higher levels of self-esteem
  • Had a greater ability to cope with difficult situations
  • Found it easier to make decisions
  • Felt closer to their friends as reading produced a greater understanding and empathy with others
  • Had a stronger and more engaged awareness of social issues and of cultural diversity than non-readers

Last March, the LRC had been on the verge of rolling out an initiative of our own to encourage our students to read more. We had been given a set of books to distribute as part of World Book NIght, we had created flyers and posters for the event, and we were going to launch a reading challenge for our students in an effort to engage more with them.

Instead, we closed our doors and it’s only now, 14 months later, that we are allowing students to sit in the LRC and browse the books shelves. Although the future seems as uncertain as ever, it would be great to finally introduce more students to our general reading collection. The books are still currently hidden away in a corner but maybe it’s about time to bring them out into the open.

The 2021 Quick Read series
Published on 27th May, the books are:

  • The Baby is Mine by Oyinkan Braithwaite
  • The Skylight by Louise Cavendish
  • Saving the Day by Katie Fforde
  • Wish You Were Dead by Peter James
  • How to be a Woman by Caitlin Moran
  • The Motive by Khurrum Rahman

Rebuilding and Growing Our Community Garden
At the rear of the College is a small area set aside for a community garden. There are some wonderful benefits to be found from gardening. It can improve your physical and psychological health, offer social benefits when working collectively and offer the opportunity to connect with nature. 

For our SEND students, it’s also an important educational tool. Horticultural activities form part of their curriculum. The students learn to cultivate and nurture the fruit plants, vegetables and flowers that they grow in the community garden. They often use the produce in their fundraising activities around the College. 

The garden isn’t just for SEND students. Some of the produce grown in the garden is destined for the training restaurant as the Catering students learn how to use the fresh ingredients in their cooking. 

Unfortunately recent events have not been kind to the garden. A near-deserted college during the pandemic left the garden vulnerable to vandalism and recent high winds made light work of destroying the polytunnel. A restoration and fundraising project has been set up by staff to reinstate this valuable asset to the college.  Good luck to all involved in this worthy endeavour.

Book Review
Daughters of Night by Laura Shepherd-Robinson
Rating: 4/5

Caroline Corsham, epitome of 18th century high society, stumbles upon the dying Lucia, a woman of her acquaintance who proves to have been not quite what Caro thought she was. Astounded at the lack of care seemingly given by the authorities, Caro takes it upon herself to find out how Lucia met such a grisly end, and so hires thief-taker Peregrine Child to find who killed this vibrant young lady.

The investigation takes our protagonists on a winding search that leads them from the doors of the rich and elite to the lower echelons of society. Late 18th century London leaps out of the pages as the duo trek from artists studios to high class brothels via country houses, encountering some very shady and dirty individuals from within all the classes.

Having read the Julia Quinn Regency set books (and of course my fair share of Jane Austen novels), I was intrigued to read this book, set at a similar time but telling a very, very different story. The social niceties are there but the twists and turns and the criminal elements make for a truly entertaining read and make it incredibly easy to immerse yourself in a less salubrious London society.

– Alison (LRC staff)

Wesak Day (Holy Day for Buddhists)

National Biscuit Day 29th May
As the nation celebrates this humble sweet snack, we ask: What is the nation’s favourite biscuit? 

A survey last year carried out by Perspectus Global asked 2,000 experienced consumers of biscuits which one they thought is the best one.

Click here to see which one came top of the list.

We love…

Another important question to be asked on National Biscuit Day: what is the best biscuit to dunk in your chosen hot beverage?

Peter Kay entered the debate in his live shows as can be seen in this Youtube clip.


Book Loans
Worried about fines during lockdown? No problem. All loans have been renewed and fines waived whilst the LRC was closed. Book returns can now be returned to the Library Desk or renewed by email/telephone.

Students are now allowed to browse our book collection as long as they adhere to simple Covid rules.

E-Book of the Week

Each week, the LRC will be highlighting an e-book that we feel will be of special interest to certain students. This week, it’s an e-book for our Business students.

Simply click the Brooklands College Login link here and access the book using your College student ID and password.

Tip of the Week

Access our virtual library online
You can search for e-books on the library catalogue or directly through our e-book providers.. Click on the Shibboleth login if requested and select Brooklands College. If you have any problems please do not hesitate to contact us at

Heritage Online | Proquest | VleBooks

Contact us with an area you are interested in or your assignment title and we can suggest some resources for you.

LRC website 
The LRC website contains links to our resources, our online catalogue and is full of information about LRC use, plus there are book reviews, links to our displays and other items of interest. It is only available to College members (sorry) and can be found through links on the LRC Google Classroom, and on the staff and student intranets.

LRC Google Classroom page
Tutors have been invited to join the Classroom and will be passing the joining code on to their students. It’s full of links to resources, and helpful advice and tips.

Please contact us at if you need support with e-books, e-resources or anything else.

Contact Us

Brooklands College Weybridge Campus

Heath Road, Weybridge, Surrey KT13 8TT

Brooklands College Ashford Campus

Stanwell Road, Ashford TW15 3DU