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HUNTING RAVEN BOOKS WINS publisher’s AWARD

Winstone’s Hunting Raven Books has been announced as one of only seven bookshops in the UK to be awarded a grant of £1,750 in a competition run by UK publisher, Pan Macmillan, as part of their 175th birthday celebrations. 

The grant was awarded to help independent bookshops launch and run a book-related project with a community outreach element. Hunting Raven Books was shortlisted in the South West, Wales and West Midlands region, alongside Mr B’s Emporium of Books in Bath and Crediton Community Bookshop in Devon. They were announced as the overall winner for the region at the annual Bookseller Association Conference in Birmingham on Monday 10th September.

The winning project ‘Books Against Loneliness’, was conceived by the shop’s manager, Tina Gaisford-Waller, and pitched to representatives of Pan Macmillan in July. Tina said, “A good independent bookshop is an essential place where people can find solace both in books and in meaningful human contact. As Frome’s longstanding independent bookshop, I believed we could do more to help alleviate loneliness in our community. 

“It’s true that books themselves have great power to ease loneliness. Reading is an immersive activity and books enable us to escape our own worries and fears for a time. But is also true that books have the power to connect us to others – opening up conversation and debate; providing us with the opportunity to share and to find common ground.”

“As a community, Frome has made great strides in addressing loneliness and I have long admired local charity Active and in Touch for the work they have done in befriending isolated and lonely members of our community. I am proud that this grant will enable us to work alongside the charity to deliver the project.”

Lucia Chadwick, project co-ordinator for Active and in Touch said, “We are absolutely thrilled to be involved in the Hunting Raven-led ‘Books Against Loneliness’ campaign. It is an important and innovative project that, I believe, would increase social cohesion by bringing people together and would further our mission to help end loneliness in our community.”

Pan Macmillan’s UK sales and brand director Anna Bond said, “Tina’s passion, originality and thoughtfulness for Hunting .Raven Books’ chosen project really shone through.”

More details about the project – and how people can get involved – will be released later this year.

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