Nottingham City Council is partnering with Nottingham Building Society, also known as The Nottingham, on an innovative new project aimed to get more young families developing their reading and mathematical skills in the beautiful settings of the city’s parks.

The StoryParks project is a seven week interactive outdoor pop-up reading and numeracy camp of stories, activities and games which will take place in five of Nottingham city’s Green Flag parks. The scheme will take place from Monday 08 July through to Saturday 31 August 2019.

The five key sites are Forest Recreation Ground, Woodthorpe Grange, Vernon Park, Highfields Park and Wollaton Hall and Deer Park.

Sessions will be themed around nature and the environment and people will have the option to drop in, use the project resources but also to get involved with programmed activities, which will include storytelling, Park Ranger sessions and many more.

The Nottingham will be supporting the project with a donation of £15,000 and will also provide a team of helpers from its highly successful team volunteering programme. Part of the inspiration for the project is the story of the Society’s founder, Samuel Fox. Born in the city in the 1700s, Fox was an abolition quaker, keen philanthropist and supporter of education for all. He started the first ‘Adult School’ in 1798 to enable factory girls to practice reading and writing.

Cllr Dave Trimble, portfolio holder for leisure and localities said: “It is fitting that this project takes place in our city as Nottingham is also one of 4 UNESCO Cities of Literature in the UK. We’re very excited about this really different approach to learning and very grateful to The Nottingham for assisting us in making this happen.

We know that reading more will expose a person to more words. This contributes to better everyday vocabulary and long term employability. Learning as a family also really improves results. Numeracy is important too, for developing logical thinking and reasoning strategies in everyday activities. Learning like this – through fun and play is ideal, and what better setting than one of our beautiful parks.”

David Marlow, Chief Executive Officer at The Nottingham said; “We are thrilled to be supporting Nottingham City Council to help the StoryParks project come to life. Sharing the story of our founder, Samuel Fox, and the positive impact he had on the lives of people in Nottingham, by encouraging reading and literacy seems a very fitting tribute in our 170th year.  Our contribution is a demonstration that 170 years on, we remain committed to supporting the communities we operate in. Our Society was built on positive social purpose and today we provide products and services built on advice to help our members strive for a better financial future, which numeracy and literacy skills are integral to. We hope the residents of Nottingham and beyond enjoy the StoryParks activities this summer.”


About The Nottingham

The Nottingham is an award-winning building society and estate agency operating online and via a network of over 60 branches across 11 counties. The eighth largest building society in the UK by assets, with the fifth biggest branch presence, The Nottingham offers a broad range of building society services such as mortgages and savings, as well as independent financial planning, whole-of-market mortgage advice and local estate agency services. Founded in 1849, The Nottingham is a mutual building society owned by its members with a long and proud history of offering financial support and advice to local communities. Through its community programme, the society has donated over £950,000 to help communities in its heartland