One of The Beatrix Potter Society’s most important activities is the reading of Beatrix Potter’s books, by Society Members, to children in their local libraries & schools. This project started in 1998 in the UK, as an initiative during The National Year of Reading, and in 2001 in the USA. It has also reached France, Australia and Canada, and the scheme grows yearly. The classic Tales are now enjoyed by thousands of children, some of whom are hearing the stories for the first time. With support from Frederick Warne, Beatrix Potter’s publishers, and The Beatrix Potter Society, each reader is given display material with worksheets and outline drawing masters that the library or school may photocopy. Each reader conducts their reading in a way relevant to the age of the children and the specific needs or interests of the group.
Since 2005, Beatrix Potter Society members have been delivering ‘Introducing Beatrix Potter’ talks and presentations to adult groups worldwide, bringing Beatrix Potter’s legacy to a broader audience. The project organisers – in the UK and the USA – keep a record of the talks and presentations and receive feedback questionnaires so we can monitor feedback and successes. A leaflet giving brief biographical details of Beatrix Potter and a short book list, as well as information about the Society itself, is available as a hand-out. The leaflet has also been translated into French. Society members in the UK, USA, Netherlands and France are already involved in this scheme.