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World Book Day

Proud Sponsors of World Book Day

World Book Day: changing lives through a love of books and shared reading

World Book Day's mission is to promote reading for pleasure, offering every child and young person the opportunity to have a book of their own.

World Book Day

The next World Book Day will take place in the UK and Ireland on 4th March 2021.

Reading for pleasure is the single biggest indicator of a child's future success – more than their family circumstances, their parents' educational background or their income.

So World Book Day wants to see more children, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, with a life-long habit of reading for pleasure and the improved life chances this brings them.

Sharing stories together for just ten minutes a day will encourage a love of reading and it's fun for everyone! World Book Day encourages everyone to read together anywhere and everywhere, from breakfast to bedtime! In the park, on the train, on the sofa, on a plane – reading and sharing stories can happen anywhere at any time. 

We offer every child and young person the opportunity to have a book of their own. Check out the £1 books that children and young people will be able to choose for FREE with their Book Tokens

3 in 10 of children receiving free school meals say the book they receive with their £1/€1.50 Book Token was the first book they had of their own.

National Book Tokens have been proud to sponsor World Book Day for more than two decades, and counting. Our sponsorship of the charity helps to send over 30.5 million £1/€1.50 Book Tokens every year to over 45,000 nurseries, primary and secondary schools and through other partners across the UK and Ireland (that’s one for nearly every child aged under 18!)

"If you don’t have enough money for one you could say to your mum, can I get this one? It’s a pound off it."

"It was absolutely the best day of my life. Of my life."

"It’s better to get a book token... They’d be happy to take you because they don’t have to spend any money."

Quotes from children taking part in 'Exploring the Impact of World Book Day, Interim Report', National Literacy Trust, April 2020

  • 64% of early years settings and 66% primary schools say World Book Day changed reading habits (World Book Day Teacher Survey, 2020)
  • 1 in 7 pupils said the book they 'bought' had been their first book of their own (increasing to 3 in 10, among children receiving free school meals) (National Literacy Trust, Annual Literacy Survey, 2019)
  • 3% children read more books, 46.1% share more books with family and friends, 42% buy more books as a result of World Book Day (Nielsen, Understanding the Children’s Book Consumer, 2019)

World Book Day changes lives through a love of books and shared reading. 


Design a National Book Token Competition 2021Congratulations to Maia... winner of our Design a National Book Token competition!

National Book Tokens and World Book Day challenged young bookworms across the UK and Ireland to make their mark on their very own National Book Tokens gift card.

Congratulations to Maia, our overall winner!

Maia's design will be made into a real National Book Tokens gift card, available in bookshops in time for Christmas. The judges love Maia's creative digital art, which captures some of the fantastical adventures that stories can take us on. The design is also emblazoned with a term all booklovers can all relate to: 'abibliophobia (uh-bib-li-uh-fo-bee-yuh). The fear of running out of things to read'. 

Maia has won hundreds of pounds worth of National Book Tokens for herself and her school – just think of all those beautiful new books!

View all six winners and runners-up


Tamara MacFarlane answers your questions

Tamara MacFarlane – owner of the award-winning Tales On Moon Lane children's bookshop – was our guest Book Doctor for World Book Day, prescribing the best reads for young booklovers.

Tamara selected five questions out of hundreds sent in! Discover her book recommendations and which readers have won a £15/€ National Book Token and a signed copy of her book, Dragon World.

Read now


Let them choose!

Research shows that children are more likely to finish a book when they're able to choose it themselves. Give a child a gift beyond words with a National Book Token – they'll love our fun designs by World Book Day illustrator Rob Biddulph, or choose one of our past competition winners' designs!

National Book Tokens can be spent in hundreds of bookshops and online.

Buy now



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