Scottish independent bookshop The Mainstreet Trading Company has revealed how it has spent the grant money it received from author James Patterson: it has bought and renovated a van, transforming it into a mobile bookshop.
The project was already in its early stages when Rosamund de la Hey, owner and founder of the shop, applied for the grant in the second round of Patterson’s funding. To date the author has awarded a total of £500,000 to UK and Irish independent booksellers. Mainstreet, which is located in St Boswells, received a contribution of £2,500.
De la Hey said: “In the past, the shop has found it difficult to attract schools to its children’s events due to transport costs. In response we have taken the initiative and created the Bookshop Van [below], a beautifully restored, vintage ex-fire engine, which will be used to bring children’s authors into Borders schools. The grant was a welcome help towards our target. We felt our project really speaks to the principles behind Patterson’s generosity.”
The project aims to enable every child in the Scottish Borders to meet an author during their time at school. Mainstreet is also working with the Scottish Borders Council to arrange events. The van was unveiled on Tuesday (20th October) by children’s author Michael Morpurgo, who then visited the Borders’ Hawick High School in the van.