Welcome to The Reader

We are the pioneers of Shared Reading – a simple idea that changes lives. 

By bringing people together to read great literature aloud we are improving well-being, reducing social isolation and building stronger communities across the UK and beyond. 

We want to make Shared Reading so widespread that everyone, whoever they are, wherever they are, can access one of our groups. To make that possible we’re building a movement of Readers. Could you be part of the story? 

“You need it, you just don’t know you need it”
Shared Reading group member

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Shared Reading North West

The Reader is building a volunteer-led movement across the North West. Shared Reading has been proven to promote better health and well-being, to increase social inclusion and we want to make it part of every community across the North West. We’re bringing people together to build a region-wide, volunteer-led movement and we want to hear from you!

Could you run a Shared Reading group in your workplace or local library? Could you help to spread the word of new Shared Reading groups in your area? Do you have the experience or skills to support other volunteers?

Volunteers will become part of region-wide network and will receive full training and ongoing support.

Read more about our Shared Reading North West partners.

Project supported by


Get in touch and be part of the story…

To learn more about our volunteering opportunities why not come along to one of our Volunteer Recruitment Events – you’ll find all the details of our upcoming events here:

Date/Time Event
Friday 23 February 2018
10:30 am - 12:00 pm

Volunteer Information Day in Wigan The Oak Centre, Wigan & Leigh Hospice, Wigan
Friday 23 February 2018 - Saturday 24 February 2018
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Volunteer Information Day at West Kirby West Kirby Arts Centre, West Kirby
Friday 9 March 2018 - Saturday 10 March 2018
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Volunteer Information Day at Liverpool City Centre FACT, Liverpool
Friday 23 March 2018
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Volunteer Information Day at Crosby Crosby Crossroads Cafe, Crosby
Saturday 24 March 2018
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Volunteer Information Day at Crosby

Or get in touch and we’ll get back to you:

You can also email volunteer@thereader.org.uk or speak to us on 0151 729 2200.

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Become a friend

Make your story part of ours

In Liverpool’s Calderstones Park, and in Shared Reading groups across the UK, The Reader brings people together. From magical children’s storytelling, to Shared Reading in care homes, we open up the wonderful world of literature to people young and old. Our work is proven to help reduce social isolation, improve health and well-being, develop skills and build communities.

“The reading groups are a different kind of medicine and it’s through them that I’ve found a way back to life.”
Daniel, Shared Reading Group Member, Birkenhead

We’re now opening a new chapter for The Reader and we’d like you to be part of it. We want to:

  • grow our national movement of volunteer Readers to bring Shared Reading to more people in the communities in which they live.
  • build a community at Calderstones Park that is based around reading and the wonderful heritage and nature on site.

Like anybody with a dream, we need Friends to help us make it a reality.

What do you get as a Reader Friend?

Every year we want to do something to bring The Reader Friends together. Early in 2018, along with our Patron, award-winning novelist and screenwriter Frank Cottrell Boyce (Millions, Cosmic, 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony), we will get in touch to ask for something that means something truly special to you. Frank will create The Reader Friends’ story from your contributions. Your story will become part of ours.

As well as this unique way of being part of The Reader, Friends will also receive:

  • a welcome pack including a tote bag and a copy of The Reader’s anthology Poets Don’t Lie — the perfect addition to any bookshelf.
  • a Friends card entitling you 20% off all in-person purchases at The Reader Café, Ice Cream Parlour, and The Storybarn.
  • an exclusive quarterly newsletter, keeping you up to date on the impact of your support.
  • a personal invitation to the launch of The International Centre for Shared Reading at Calderstones in 2018.

Families can take advantage of all of these benefits plus four tickets to The Storybarn, The Reader’s interactive story centre for children at Calderstones Park, for £6 per month (£72 per year).

Pass it forward. Reader Friendship makes a unique present for any occasion while making a real difference in the community.

Become a friend now

Email friends@thereader.org.uk for more information or call
0151 729 2200.


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The Reader welcomes incredible support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery

Funding from players will support Shared Reading movement to help people affected by social isolation, mental health issues and dementia across Great Britain. The Reader, a national charity which builds stronger, healthier communities through volunteer-led Shared Reading groups, has been awarded £400,000 of funds raised by players of People’s Postcode Lottery. The Reader brings people …

Shared Reading expands nationwide thanks to National Lottery funding

UK charity to help people living with social isolation, mental health issues and dementia through reading groups. The Reader, a national charity which aims to build stronger, healthier communities through a volunteer-led Shared Reading programme, has been awarded £850,000 of National Lottery funding through the Big Lottery Fund. The Reader brings people together through Shared …

For comment, interviews or information, please email martingallagher@thereader.org.uk

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