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After hearing about ABC from one of the charity’s trustees David Spragg, the team at the Beckenham site of Riverside SEN invited the ABC team into their school to see if they could help fill a corner of their Happy Café with books. Riverside is a school for children with some profound additional needs and the Happy Café was created as a space where pupils can relax with their parents and carers to work on their day-to-day skills such as making a drink or sandwich. This fully functioning café had a corner that was crying out to be filled with an engaging reading space, and so the ABC team enlisted the help of local estate agent Langford Russell and iconic set designer Olivbells. ABC also worked closely with the school to identify the most appropriate books for the interests and abilities of the children.

The bespoke seating and shelving structure is a colourful and bright ice cream design, echoing the café’s theme. The Olivbells team included drawers under the bench to store books so that the accessible display books can be changed as often as the children wish. ABC added bespoke bench pads, ice cream themed cushions and a colourful rug to complete the look. With the most important addition of almost 1,000 preloved books sure to keep the children and their parents busy, the Book Nook is now complete!  

Beckenham’s Langford Russell office collected books specifically for the project, and Branch Manager Eddie Youds came along to help launch the space to the children, who were delighted and excitedly sat in the nook reading with their parents and carers.

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“I just wanted to say a huge thank you for your generosity. It was so lovely to see our pupils dart over to look through the books as soon as the ribbon was cut, it was clear to see that the area will be much used and loved. The library has added a new lease of life to the Happy Cafe already and we can't wait to be able to use it and share it with our pupils and their families.”
Charlotte Downs
Assistant head Teacher, Riverside

Partners on this project...

Olivbells Creations

A well renowned film and TV set design company. When we shared our vision for the design with them they were only too pleased to help.

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