Sharing stories has enabled humans to learn, discover and grow for millennia – and now Simple Life residents have the chance to swap stories and books in their own neighbourhoods.
This month we were pleased to launch our first Book Boxes, hosted in the front gardens of resident volunteer Book Guardians. The first four were installed at Shrewsbury Close, Coral Mill, Brookside Grange and Rochwood Rise, with another six lined up for more sites in Greater Manchester and Lancashire. Following this initial batch of 10, we already have volunteers across other regions which will make up close to 20 boxes by the end of September.
The boxes have been created for Simple Life by HM Raitt and Sons Ltd, a Scottish-based joiner / apprentice team, who take reclaimed timber to build new pieces and furniture. Materials for our first boxes have included wood from salvaged Indonesian fishing boats, paneling from an Edinburgh book shop dating back to the early 1900s, and reclaimed Swedish hardwood used as flooring in the 1980s. Even the metal base plates are constructed from metal used in a decommissioned road gritter!
We are delighted at the reception of the book boxes already, with neighbours coming together to see what’s inside, utilising the brand new My Simple Life app forum feature to remind the community of its location.
Following the success of this initial batch, we hope to see Book Guardians come forward across all our sites, to encourage residents to swap and reuse unwanted books, as well as support adult and child literacy throughout our developments.