Celebrating the country’s finest pupil librarians

Year 10 boy Rishi Shah took part in the final of the national Pupil Librarian of the Year – and he had a well-known author to support him.

The five finalists, together with their families and school librarians, were invited to Portcullis House in Westminster for the award ceremony.

Twenty children’s authors were there with the finalists and one of these – Holly Smale, author of the best-selling series Geek Girl – supported Rishi, reading out a statement about his work in The Queen’s Library and some plaudits from School staff.

Barbara Band, Chair of the Judging Panel and founder of the award, said: “Whilst there has to be one winner, the day is about all five finalists and their achievements.”

""An address was given by Cathy Cassidy, who spoke up in defence of libraries and their importance to society, saying how vital it is that young people continue to support them.

All the shortlisted pupil librarians, who came from as far afield as Belfast and Hampshire, went away with a pile of signed books from the visiting authors, as well as a framed certificate and glass book award.

""Rishi has helped in the Library for two years, and although he did not win the award, QE Librarian Ciara Murray re-iterated her praise for his work: “Rishi is a very dedicated and mature member of the team that I can trust with any job I throw at him and is continually thinking of ways to improve what the Library offers. It has been a delight to have him working here – long may it continue!

“The work of the pupil librarians in Queen Elizabeth’s is vital in allowing us to offer the great service that we provide. The boys are given real responsibility from day one, and they regularly give up their time – often well beyond what is asked of them – to help us.”

The winner was Victoria Langford, a pupil at St Hilda’s CE High School in Liverpool.