Customer Stories: The Little Library at Coram’s Fields

Families using the Little Library

In the heart of London, between Great Ormond St Hospital and King’s Cross, lies Coram’s Fields. This leafy park and playground provides a welcome contrast to the bustling city streets all around, as well as a wonderful place for kids to get active. It’s also home to the Coram’s Fields charity that provides much needed support to children and their families.

The plan to create the Little Library at Coram’s Fields was hatched by Alia Bokhary and her two young children, Oliver and Cara, all of whom love to visit the park and playground. They were inspired after seeing a similar scheme elsewhere. According to Alia:

“We came across a little free library in late 2022 and thought the book exchange, with its heart-warming ‘take one, share one’ concept was wonderful.”

This encounter led them to seize the initiative and enlist their own cast of characters to help establish the Little Library at Coram’s Fields.

A community gem in the heart of London

Coram's Fields
Coram’s Fields

The concept is a simple one: to create a place where children and their families can come and borrow a book to read and leave another in its place, if they’re able to do so. It’s a wonderful idea, born out of kindness and generosity, that taps into the power of community and our shared love of reading. To turn the dream into reality, however, there was a list of practicalities they would need to address.

Bringing the story to life

Alia and her family quickly came to the realisation that they’d need to overcome a few hurdles before the Little Library could come to life. They would need their location and permission to set up there. They would need a stock of books to get the ball rolling. The Little Library itself would need to be designed and built. And they’d need signage to give the Library an identity and let visitors know what to do.

Luckily, solving the location issue was not a struggle. Coram’s Fields was the perfect place for the project, and the charity that oversees the park embraced the idea wholeheartedly. However, then the hard work of making the library a reality had to start in earnest.

The heroes’ journey

Young readers enjoy the Little Library

Alia began by reaching out to whichever individuals and organisations she could think of that might have something to offer. The response was encouraging. Before long, Alia had assembled an impressive list of contributors:

“We set about working out who might be able to help us and have been so heartened and overwhelmed by the generosity of the many contributors to the project.”

Renowned illustrator Allen Fatimaharan designed the Little Library’s logo, while Gerrish Design saw to the signage. Paul Godbolt and Anna O’Flaherty from Richmond upon Thames College, together with a team of their students, looked after the design and construction of the library itself, incorporating architectural details like the columns and angled roof from structures in the park, ensuring it fit right in at Coram’s Fields.

Attic Self Storage in King’s Cross offered storage space free of charge, while a whole host of publishers and retailers stumped up the reading material, including Walker Books, World of Books, Harper Collins, Bettterworldbooks and Acorn Book Club. Children’s author Cate Douglas even contributed signed copies. With all of the pieces falling into place, the Library was finally able to open its doors, or possibly windows, to the public.

Enter Solopress

Bookmarks and Stickers

At this point in the story, a chance meeting at a trade show led to Solopress becoming involved. According to Alia:

“I met Glen during The London Stationery Show, where I was volunteering with another fantastic charity. We had a lovely chat and when I was thinking about a company who might be able to assist with stickers and bookmarks, Solopress immediately sprung to mind. “

Alia had met Glen Eckett, Head of Marketing here at Solopress, who had become inspired by the story of the Little Library. Glen agreed that Stickers and Bookmarks would be the perfect print products to accompany the books and spread the library’s message. We set about the design and print of the items, and we ’re proud to say that Alia enjoyed her experience dealing with Solopress:

“The team at Solopress are very professional, friendly and quick to respond and I am delighted with the service and quality of product.”

It’s safe to say that the print we were able to provide went down well at Coram’s Fields:

“ I have witnessed many families enjoying the library and it is lovely to see the children’s delight at finding the additional surprise of the beautiful bookmark.”

Tell your own story

If the story of the Little Library at Coram’s Fields has inspired you to bring your own project to life, visit Solopress today and discover how our printing solutions can help.

Creating printed materials like Bookmarks and Stickers can be a great way to delight your audience with some fun and practical branding. The Solopress range is full of items that can enhance your customer’s experience.

Alternatively, if you wish to create a masterpiece of your own, our Book printing service could make your story come to life!