Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Urban Fox Spotted In Tower Hamlets

London's urban foxes have an ability to pop up in the most unlikely places. Today, an urban fox has made a permanent home in Wapping thanks to Tower Hamlets Community Housing. The fox in question is of course one of our fabulous Hannah Adamaszek designed Urban Fox Little Free Libraries. This is Tower Hamlet's first LFL.

The LFL is perfectly placed on Wapping High Street at the junction of Lilley Close. Tower Hamlets Community Housing chose the location so that the LFL could be enjoyed by its residents, the local community and all visitors to this historic part of London.

Author Stephanie Saulter officially opened the library by donating copies of her book. Stephanie’s third novel, Regeneration, completes the trilogy that began with Gemsigns and continued in Binary. The stories are set in 22nd century London, and chronicle the struggles of a genetically modified people, the gems, first to escape the grip of the commercial companies that created them, and then to overcome the suspicion, discrimination and prejudice which they face from the norm majority. In Regeneration, the gems’ emergence as innovators and entrepreneurs in their own right begins to threaten not only entrenched business interests, but the entire political status quo.

Stephanie said: “I’m a big fan of what the Little Free Libraries, and indeed all libraries, do for their communities; but this particular library, in this particular place, has a huge resonance with my own work. I was very aware of the historic and cultural significance of the different parts of the city that I used in the novels. The area of east London where the majority of my characters live is known to them as the Squats, and it’s a safe haven for homeless, victimised, marginalised people – a place from which they can begin to rebuild their lives. In our time, that same area is known as … Wapping. But it gets even better, because those newly emancipated people learn what they need to know in part by accessing archived knowledge. In other words, they consult the library. I can’t tell you how delighted I am to see that tale come full circle.”

The next time you're in Wapping, be sure to stop by and donate a book, take a book or both. Thanks to everyone at Tower Hamlets Community Housing and Stephanie Saulter for bringing more books to the East End. 

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

London's Little Free Libraries

We're building Little Free Libraries for communities all across the UK, but in today's post we share photos of some of our favourite Little Free Libraries from around the capital. Happy reading!

Little Free Library London UK
A TARDIS, some foxes and telephone boxes. Stop by, take a look and pick up a book. Great Portland Street Phone Box Little Free Library; Foxes in Wapping and Walthamstow; and a Little TARDIS Library, landing here, there and everywhere.

Little Free Library London UK

Investigating something new in the neighbourhood. Clapton, Hackney.

Johnny Rotten and Samuel Plimsoll came both from here, so we thought they should meet on the Prah Road Little Free Library, Finsbury Park.

Little Free Library Finsbury Park UK

"If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need." Cicero. Finsbury Park.

Little Free Library London UK

Peacock inspired Little Free Library Holland Park.

Little Free Library London UK

Books in the playground at Heathmere School, Roehampton.

Little Free Library London UK

Read a book by the river in Wapping.

Little Free Library London UK

Roar! Red Lion Lane, Shooters Hill/Woolwich.

Little Free Library London UK

Lost in a book in Walthamstow Village.

Little Free Library London UK

Pick up a book on your way home from school in E17.

Magic Forest Little Free Library, Highams Park E4.

Happy reading in Wanstead.

Little Free Library London UK

Follow the white rabbit... to Walthamstow.

Friday, 2 October 2015

The Little Free Library map of Waltham Forest

We're installing Little Free Libraries in communities all over the UK. From Bradford in the north to Brighton in the south and lots of wonderful communities in between. One community in North East London (Walthamstow) has really embraced the Little Free Library movement and now has 25 LFLs in and around the area, the largest neighbourhood network in the UK.

The first one was installed on Garner Road in May 2014, with the most recent opening it's tiny door on Springfield Road on Monday 28th September. The map includes LFLs installed throughout the borough, including Leyton, Leytonstone and Highams Park. To celebrate this Little Free Library landmark, we've created a Waltham Forest Little Free Library map. Happy reading!

If you live in London and love to read books, why not take a tour. The LFLs are always brimming with books, but equally always need new donations too. Children's books are particularly welcome!

Special thanks to all of Waltham Forest's brilliant LFL hosts, all of the tremendously talented artists and all the groups, organisations and businesses that have helped fund this project. Find out more at 

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Parklife: sharing books with London communities

This month we've been busy installing Little Free Libraries in the places where communities congregate and children play: in or near some of London's parks. 

We worked with artist Hannah Adamaszek to create this peacock themed Little Free Library, taking inspiration from the beautiful birds that roam freely throughout Holland Park. Opposite the entrance to Holland Park on Abbotsbury Road.

Inside Finsbury Park, this Little Free Library was decorated in partnership with the Finsbury Park Arts Club and is covered with inspiring literary quotes to encourage passersby to stop and
pick up a book.

The second of our Finsbury Park Little Free Libraries can be found close by on Prah Road and depicts former local residents Samuel Plimsoll and Johnny Rotten.

Located outside International Students House (ISH) on Great Portland Street near the Euston Road entrance to Regents Park. A full size phone box replica full of books. Built in partnership with ISH.

Happy reading!

Just installed with decoration by East London artist Gabriela Castellanos, this garden themed Little Free Library is already getting some attention.

Located at the Daubeney Fields Community Garden opposite Clapton Park,

"If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need." Cicero.

Happy reading!

Thursday, 24 September 2015

Sparks fly as Hackney's latest Little Free Library is installed

Set to be officially opened on Saturday 26 September, our latest creation was yesterday welded into position at Daubeney Fields community garden opposite Clapton Park in Hackney.

Sunday, 6 September 2015

The Little TARDIS Library has landed

At around 9.30am Greenwich Mean Time on Sunday 6 September a Little TARDIS Library landed in the UK on Brighton beach. Following an investigation of the library's memory circuit we discovered that it had returned to our dimension after journeying through all the worlds of literature. From Lilliput and Narnia to Middle Earth and Wonderland, the Little TARDIS Library has explored all of literature's fantasy worlds and filled it's small shelves with the many stories told at each location.

The Little TARDIS Library will now embark on a tour of the UK sharing stories with children and young people to help promote their love of reading. Stocked with hundreds of classic books (because the Little TARDIS Library is bigger on the inside) it will be landing in schools, libraries and parks across the UK.

The Little TARDIS Library is an official Little Free Library built and created by Little Free Library Project UK, a registered educational charity.

Here are just some of the wonderful books that the Little TARDIS Library will be bringing to you:

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett
Winnie the Pooh, A.A. Milne
The Phantom Tollbooth, Norton Juster
The Hobbit, J.R.R. Tolkien
Treasure Island, Robert Louis Stevenson
Peter Pan, J.M. Barrie
The Harry Potter series, J.K. Rowling
The Chronicles of Narnia, C.S. Lewis
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl
Black Beauty, Anna Sewel
Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck
The Adventures of the Wishing Chair, Enid Blyton
To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee
Charlotte's Web, E.B. White
The Suitcase Kid, Jacqueline Wilson
The Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum
Cinderella, Charles Perrault
The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Snail and the Whale, Julia Donaldson
A collection of Oscar Wilde titles
A collection of Charles Dickens titles
A collection of Shakespeare's plays

Find out more about the Little TARDIS Library and how to arrange a visit to your school or community by contacting us at You can also follow @TARDIS_LFL on twitter to keep up with our adventures. Happy reading!

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

Books and flowers: the roof garden Little Free Library

One of our recent creations! The roof garden Little Free Library. It reminds us of an Oscar Wilde quote: "With freedom, books, flowers and the moon, who could not be happy."

The Little Free Library will be hosted by author and school librarian Lucy Ivison outside her home in Acton, West London. We hope that the unique design will attract and engage readers from across the community.

Visit our website for more on our recent projects.

Monday, 13 July 2015

Swindon's first Little Free Library

Every Little Free Library is completely unique and Swindon's first is no different. We were lucky enough to work with the supremely talented Lynette Thomas of Artkore Mosaics, who has created a stunning artwork that will be on show, and offering free books to the community, outside Savernake Street Social Hall in Swindon's Old Town.

The project has been created in partnership with the Eastcott Community Organisation who run a range of community events at the Savernake Street venue including a Free Shop and a regular reading group. Find out more about upcoming events here. The LFL was made possible by a grant from Swindon Borough Council.

The Little Free book exchange was launched on Sunday 12 July at the communty's Big Lunch and Neighbourhood Party event and people began to take and donate books straight away.

The intricate mosaic art makes use of recycled pottery and china including cups, plates and even old teapots, which are broken into colourful pieces of varying size to create the beautiful design. As far as we know its the first ceramic mosaic Little Free Library in the world and will take pride of place on the Little Free Library world map in due course.

"This is the first, but we're hoping to create many more Little Free Libraries in Swindon and the South West of England." said Nick Cheshire, Director of Little Free Library UK. There are currently two Little Free Libraries in Bath and one set to open in Torbay later this summer with work underway for a Bristol project too.

"I have really enjoyed creating the Little Free Library mosaic." said artist Thomas. The hosts agreed on a nature theme and Thomas did the rest. Stunning!

Friday, 26 June 2015

Books in the playground

Books open us up to a world of imagination, but before a child chooses to pick up, open and read a book, they need to be inspired to do so. If books are fuel for the imagination, then the places where the books reside must inspire us too.

As part of a new national project we're installing unique and engaging Little Free Libraries in schools, more specifically in the school playgrounds, where children play. The scheme encourages children to take books as well as share their favourite stories with one another too.

Children at Priory Infants School at the launch of their Little Free Library

Each Little Free Library is decorated with an engaging artistic design, in many cases based on ideas suggested by children during school workshops.
Illustrator and author Polly Dunbar with students at Priory Infants School
We work with a wide range of professional artists and illustrators, who not only decorate our Little Free Libraries, but also come into schools with us to conduct art workshops. We also host community events outside school aimed at encouraging children's interest in art. Below, an aspiring artist at a recent event at Higham Hill Hub in North East London. Artist Kiko Honda-Powell created mini LFL templates for budding designers to create their own Little Free Libraries.

"I've designed a Little Library!"
Teachers and literacy leads at the schools we have worked with tell us that they are keen to use every possible resource available to promote reading in their schools and at home. By supplementing school libraries with Little Free Libraries, children have even more access to books and in less conventional settings.

"Having Little Free Libraries at School, where children can choose a book to keep and perhaps return one with a recommendation, will make a huge difference." said Deputy Head Ben Cooper from Heathmere Primary School in South West London.

We also work with partners such as publishers and other charities such as Give a Book to access high quality books to stock our Little Free Libraries.

Illustrator and author Gary Northfield with children at Heathmere Primary School
In a recent report Save the Children outlined four key drivers to help ensure children are able to read well:
  1. Celebrating the enjoyment of reading in communities;
  2. Supporting children to develop good early language skills before starting school;
  3. Providing the right support to primary schools; and
  4. Supporting mothers and fathers to help their children's reading.
Little Free Libraries, as part of an overall strategy, are able to support the achievement of each of these four goals, providing an excellent tool to teachers, parents and communities to help promote a love of reading.

Our Books in the Playground project offers teachers and educators an additional tool to help promote reading in school, while our community projects are installing Little Free Libraries in front gardens, parks and other community spaces where children and their parents can access free books all day, everyday.

For more information about this project or about our other community projects please email us at

Happy reading!

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Central London's first Little Free Library

To help celebrate their 50th anniversary, International Students House (ISH) has worked in partnership with us at Little Free Library Project to create central London's first Little Free Library.
A full scale replica phone box, full of brilliant books, was officially opened on 14 May by author John Rogers. John's book, This Other London: Adventures in the overlooked city, tells the story of John's journey to discover some of the more overlooked and unusual aspects of our wonderful international city, like our latest Little Free Library.

Central London's first Little Free Library is located outside International Students House at 229 Great Portland Street, London (opposite Great Portland Street tube station).
Little Free Libraries take many forms, from small house shaped boxes with various artistic designs to phone boxes and even a TARDIS. They are installed in front gardens, cafes, pubs and community spaces and of course, now, outside International Students House. Here are a few of our other Little Free Libraries.

Walthamstow, art by cartoonist Tim Reedy
Hackney, art by urban artist Hannah Adamaszek
Woolwich, art by illustrator Emma Russell
Find out more at Happy reading!

Saturday, 9 May 2015

Kickstart our school project and receive your very own Little Free Library

Heathmere Primary school doesn't have a school library at the moment. To help promote a love of reading at the school and provide a regular supply of engaging books, we've teamed up with 'Give a Book' to build a mini network of Little Free Libraries at Heathmere.

We've created a new Kickstarter project to help raise the funds for this much needed school project. We're asking you to support us if you can by pledging any amount starting at £1. However, if you, your community or an organisation you represent is willing to pledge £250, we'll build you your very own Little Free Library too.

Find out more by following the link to our project below:

To give you some inspiration, here are a few of our recent Little Free Libraries. Happy reading!

Thursday, 30 April 2015

Julius Zebra set to open School's new Little Free Library

On 5 May we'll be officially opening a new Little Free Library at Heathmere Primary School in Wandsworth, South West London. To help us we've invited along author and illustrator Gary Northfield, creator of the brilliant Julius Zebra.

The Little Free Library was built from 100% recycled materials and decorated by one of our in-house artists with an inspiring fairytale theme. It will be located in the school playground where children will have access to books at break times as well as before and after school.

We are working with our partners Give a Book on this exciting new project, who will be donating books to the Little Free Library throughout the year.

Gary will cut the ribbon to officially open the new LFL as well as reading from his book and getting the children involved in a draw-along so they can learn how to create their own version of Julius Zebra. 

"Heathmere Primary School doesn't currently have a school library, which is why projects like this can be so beneficial. The children will be able to access free books to take home and keep, as well as sharing their favourite stories with each other." said Nick Cheshire, LFL Project Director.

The school would like two more Little Free Libraries to be created and installed over the next few months. We'll be launching a fundraising campaign on 5 May to help make this happen. 

Read about the Little Free Library in the Wandsworth Guardian here.