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.