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Get stuck into your local Library!

Posts in Young People

Try Reading at Bolton Libraries

Posted Monday 2 December 2013 by Brenda in Libraries, Young People

Bolton’s Library Services have been delighted to take part in the Arts Council sponsored Try Reading promotion for 2013.

Public library services are working together to celebrate Rugby League World Cup and to get more people reading. Over 150 events, including author talks, writing workshops and drama events have been taking place across the North West, Yorkshire and Humberside to highlight this international competition until the end of November.

In Bolton, the project kicked off in May, where reception classes from Bolton School and Sacred Heart Primary School in Westhoughton received a special visit from Grubber Bear, the Rugby League World Cup 2013 Mascot. Library staff and professional rugby players also made an appearance to launch the picture book specially commissioned for Try Reading ‘What’s a Bear to Wear’ by Tom Palmer.

In July, Bolton library staff visited St James (Daisy Hill) CE Primary School, whose year 4 pupils were winners of the Try Reading “Welcome Haka” workshop. Children took part in two workshops combining words and dance to create a welcome Haka for the arrival of the Fijian Rugby Team to Bolton in October 2013.

We were also delighted to welcome Children’s author Tom Palmer (author of ‘Scrum’ and ‘What’s a Bear to Wear’) to Bolton Central Library as part of our sports themed July Super Saturday. Families were invited to take part in a free rugby game, which featured a quiz about reading taken from newspapers, books and magazines about Rugby. Those who answered correctly competed in a penalty taking competition, with the winner receiving a trophy. Tom also talked about how he became an author and offered advice on all aspects of writing.

In late September, drama enthusiasts from St James's C of E High School in Farnworth enjoyed a special workshop based around the play 'Broken Time', hosted by Three Stones Media.

The play, written and directed by Mick Martin, is set in the 1890s and is based on the birth of rugby league. The children watched as Jo, Matt and Dean of Three Stones Media acted out a scene from the play and then had an opportunity to discuss the scene, as well as acting out some role play for themselves.

The project has culminated with a number of events that took place throughout October, including a ‘Rugby on Paper’ panel discussion with industry writers, publishers and current and former international Rugby players Phil Caplan, Tony Hannan, Ray French and Dave Hadfield.

We were delighted to welcome authors Billy Isherwood and Andy Holgate to Bolton Central Library, and local author Geoff Lee to Westhoughton Library who all gave inspiring and insightful talks.

This project has enabled Bolton Library Services to develop partnerships with local schools, Rugby clubs, authors, actors and libraries throughout the North West, Yorkshire and Humberside, and we hope to continue these relationships long after the project has been completed.

New Zealend vs Samoa

Posted Monday 28 October 2013 by Brenda in Events, Young People

I  was able to go to the first RLWC13 match in Warrington’s Halliwell Jones Stadium and I thoroughly RLWC2013 Program group B and match ticketenjoyed the game.

I’ve been to the stadium before to see the Wolves play and I have to say that as a host town for Samoay that as a host town for Songton Town centre as part of the shame Somoa didn' that as a host town for Soma the Warrington f the Warrington fans treated and supported the Samoan team like they were their own.

It truly was a great family event.

My 9 year old daughter Ellen really enjoyed the game too.  Earlier that day she had taken part in the Window on Warrington event which saw performers aged from 3 to 87 dance within the streets of Warrington Town centre as part of the build up  for the game in Warrington.

 This is what Ellen had to say about it all

  “Try reading, because it is fun you will get a good education and when you are older and you want to be an author you will have loads of ideas from books.”

  “It was the first Rugby League World Cup game I have been to. New Zealand against Samoa.  It was a shame Samoa didn’t win but it was a really good game.”


If you get the chance to get yourself a Rugby League World Cup 2013 programme there are some interesting articles to read there about the teams.  Such as the hopes for the Samoan team from their head coach Matt Parish.

The Silverwood Experience by Richard Silverwood (ref)

Posted Thursday 17 October 2013 by Brenda in Events, Libraries, Young People

It’s Tuesday 1st October and we (the 7 full time referees) are called into a meeting prior to our 2 pm training session to be told the appointments for the 2013 Super League Grand Final. A season’s hard Richard Silverwood at the 2013 Super League cup Finalwork from training to the weekly hard slog of refereeing in Super League it all comes down to this final week.


Having had the honour to referee 2 Grand Finals in 2010 and last year’s final there is no better place to referee and no better feeling than walking out at the theatre of dreams so you can imagine the anticipation as I walk into the meeting.  Jon Sharp (Head of Referee) then delivers the words I wanted. "The referee for the grand final will be Richard Silverwood." Joy, relief and excitement soon grips me. The hard work has paid off and now I start building for one massive game on Saturday between 2 great sides in Wigan Warriors and Warrington Wolves.


My preparation starts straight away with a field session at Leeds Metropolitan University (Carnegie Campus). This includes refereeing drills simulating situations we feel may occur on Saturday. Ruck area drills are the theme of the session as both sides are so dangerous around this area and thrive on quick play the balls so its my duty to get this right. We also focus on the kicking game of both sides, something Lee Briers does very well to Joel Monaghan and Matty Smith/ Blake Green to Pat Richards. Kicks across field throw up different challenges for officials. Are players on side? Are players obstructed? Are players escorted off the ball? All these things need to be judged right.


Wednesday is our day off so my preparation resumes Thursday with another field session at Carnegie followed by video work back at Red Hall (RFL Headquarters). We do a video preview every week during the season whereby we look at areas that may have slipped that need tidying up, the way teams play, moves etc.., and also any traits players may have so that come game day the referee is armed with lots of information to help them deal with and manage the game properly. The video session is followed by our shirt presentations. This is something new this year and a really nice touch by Jon Sharp and the coaching team.


Friday I make my way to my Manchester Hotel. The norm on Grand Final weekend is that the officials arrive as normal 2 hours prior to kick off. No hotels are provided for us but on my previous finals I have booked a hotel Friday and Saturday night just to make it that bit different and to help get myself in the zone ready.


Saturday arrives and the excitement is building. Game day I like to stick to the same routine which always includes a sleep for a couple of hours prior to arriving at the ground. During this time I basically visualize walking out, the start of the game, different scenarios and how I might handle conflict situations. I find this really helps.


The drive up towards Old Trafford gets the juices flowing. Seeing the masses of fans hits home I’m about to referee a massive match. I arrive at Old Trafford and I’m greeted by shouts from fans which range from, “Good luck” to abuse.  Standard!   A walk around the pitch and greeting my team of officials are my first duties. The banter between us starts which helps just take your mind off the game for a little while.


On most big games we are fortunate to have masseurs work with us. These are great pre-match just to loosen you up and also relax you and get you in the right mind set ready to perform. The coin toss is done at 5.15pm to which Wigan Captain Sean O'Loughlin wins and elects to kick off towards their home fans in the Stretford end. Final words of encouragement and a few points to my team of officials follow and now we are ready to go.


The feeling stood in the tunnel with both teams and the sound of Jerusalem been played out sends tingles down the spine. This is what you work for - moments like this.

The walk out is deafening, no other place beats that. Truly Fantastic.


I get the cue for the Sky floor manager to kick off and Pat Richards gets the game underway. The game starts at lightening pace and straight away within 2 minutes the first major incident to deal with. Blake Green is down injured and nobody knows what has happened. I then get notified by the video referee that Warrington's Ben Westwood has caught him in the face with a swinging arm and that the incident needs to go on report. As the incident wasn't seen at the time that is the only way we can deal with it. The incident is place on report and the next set from Warrington I can feel Wigan's defence gets a lot more aggressive especially when Westwood takes a carry.


The opening exchanges I’d say went to Wigan. A great 40/20 from Green, back up off the canvas sets Wigan up for a good attack at the Warrington line but they bomb the chance and slowly the momentum swings to Warrington. Penalties against Wigan start to come as they become a bit loose with their play and struggle to contain Warrington's speed around the ruck area. Then as I stated earlier what I had practiced to be ready for, the kick from Briers to Monaghan comes and Warrington open their account. Warrington soon post 2 more tries and is becoming a little one sided but Warrington never seemed to pull away further and Wigan claw their way back into the game and go in at half time 16-6 behind.


Richard Silverwood refereeing at the Grand Final 2013The half time talk between officials is very much how the game is looking, any issues seen and basically words of encouragement for the 2nd half. We feel the game has gone well for the officials so far. Unfortunate on the Westwood incident as it’s very difficult to see something like that as an official so more of the same 2nd half was the message.


The 2nd half is dominated by Wigan. The start to control the ruck area and feel there line speed is a lot more aggressive than in the 1st half and Warrington are really struggling to contain them. The game is stopped a while due to a nasty injury to Joel Monaghan. He gets his head in the wrong position and is knocked out cold. He is carried off and it’s a key loss to Warrington. Penalties start to mount up against Warrington mostly for ball steals or high tackles and this gifts Wigan field position to which the points start to flow for Wigan.

During the 2nd half there are 2 incidents at a key stage of the game that go against Warrington. Firstly Myler runs around the back of Paul Wood close to the defensive line so technically that is a penalty which we have given all year. I don't like the penalty but that is our policy that’s been agreed by coaches so it has to be given. That comes as Warrington is attacking the Wigan line at 24-16 down. The next incident is a tackle of Stefan Ratchford by Harrison Hanson which again is a massive talking point. Lee Mossop is hold of Ratchford upright and Hanson comes in and hits Ratchford in the hip and the pressure from Mossop also bends Ratchford backwards which does damage to Ratchfords ankle. He is taken off which proves massive for Warrington. As per current policy guidelines Hanson has done nothing wrong but it’s a tackle that many coaches are against.


The game ends and Wigan Warriors have turned around a 16-6 half time score to win the Grand Final 30-16.

A really intense game to referee.

As always with a game, that intense and so much at stake you will always get talking points and things to look at but overall a good job by my team of officials and another Grand Final under my belt. Roll on 2014


Richard Silverwood

Friends Rugby Fever

Posted Tuesday 15 October 2013 by Penny in Libraries, Young People

Friends Rugby fever

Close friends, sports fanatics and avid readers Sam and Matthew are both aged 9 and live in Greater Manchester.

Recently they have taken part in the annual Libraries Summer Reading Challenge– based around the “Creepy House” Theme. They both enjoyed the “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” series by Jeff Kinney as well as graphic novels on their favourite Marvel Superheroes. Sam states his favourite is Spiderman and Matthew is mad for Thor.

Matthew plays rugby every week at his local club and Sam is learning tag rugby at school.

They found out about the recent visit to Tameside Libraries by author, Tom Palmer, and loved the idea of his books being based round sports.

Top of their list to read was “Scrum” by Tom Palmer – "One boy, two codes - How will he decide? When Steven's mother remarries and moves down south, Steven is torn between loyalty to his dad and a relationship with his mum's new husband. Maybe even worse, he might have to leave his beloved Rugby League behind for a new Rugby Union team."

SCRUM by Tom Palmer

Asking the boys what they thought of the book....

Sam felt this was a great book – “I read it all in one night, I was worried that Steven (the main character in the book) wouldn’t be able to play Rugby after he had to move away from his friends.”

“I like playing Rugby – I didn’t know you could get books on it as well. The story was exciting, but it also told me about Rugby League and Rugby Union. I want to play for the Warrington Wolves some day!” Matthew told us. We hope that his dream will come true.....

There are lots of books people of all ages may like to try at the Try reading site - Try these books

World Cup

Public Libraries Supporting
Rugby League World Cup 2013

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