MORE than 100,000 books have been read by 25,000 Hampshire children in this year’s Summer Reading Challenge, it has been revealed.

A total of 25,394 children took part in this year’s free Summer Reading event, reading a whopping 100,000 books between them.

The Summer Reading Challenge is hosted at most Hampshire County Council’s libraries between July and September encouraging school children to read over the summer holidays.

Hampshire County Council’s Executive Member for Recreation and Heritage, Councillor Seán Woodward, said: “Our young readers have done brilliantly well in the Summer Reading Challenge and it was great to see all the mischief being created and the range of books being read – my congratulations go to all those who took part.”

Run by the Reading Agency, the Summer Reading Challenge is aimed at 4 to 11 year olds.

The challenge is to read any six books over a two month period, from mid-July to mid-September.

This year’s theme was ‘Mischief Makers’ in honour of the 80th anniversary of the Beano comics, which contain continually popular characters, including Dennis the Menace, Minnie the Mix, The Bash Street Kids and Billy Whizz.

Cllr Woodward added: “A special thanks goes to all the library staff and volunteers, including our young volunteers, who contributed to the success of the challenge, from running school assemblies, to listening to children each time they returned to record their reading total.”