For this summer only the National Literacy Trust has paired with Wild in Art to create the BookBench Trail, commissioning stunning book-cover inspired benches to litter the streets of London for your wonder and delight.These benches will later be sold in October at auction and the money raised will be used to improve literacy for disadvantaged children in the UK. I’m a huge supporter of this cause so I’ve made it my mission to see at least two of the four BookBench trails before they’re gone.
As I was in London to see the 1984 play at the end of last month, I decided to go on the Bloomsbury trail so that I could observe my favourite novel in this new and unique form. I was most disappointed to see that it had been taken away to be repaired.
But I did find the building that inspired the Ministry of Love close by.
Although I missed Peter Pan and Pride and Prejudice due to limited time and a debilitating lack of direction, I did manage to find the majority of the benches on the trail (apologies for the poor quality of some of these images, but I am not a photographist):
I also found the Jules Verne bench inside Stanfords at Convent Garden. This is possibly my second favourite after The Lion, the Witch and the the Wardrobe:
You may have noted that I didn’t take photos of the front of some of these benches. That is because people were sitting on them.
I know what you’re going to say. “Erm…but they’re benches.” But they’re on a plinth. From childhood we are taught anything on a plinth is not to be touched. Plus they are a weird curved shape, made from fibreglass (the most uncomfortable material to make a bench out of), most are placed in a central location and they are all carefully and beautifully painted. So why would anyone sit on them?
Anyway, the BookBench trail was a lovely way to spend the day. Especially as I ate this afterwards:
And experienced this tree:
So, all in all, a good day.