Tower Hamlets Book Award 2018

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  1. Send your feedback
  2. The Books
  3. About the Book Award
  4. Why Join in?
  5. Timeline and guidelines
  6. Register
  7. Competition
  8. Grand Finale

Congratulations, Neill Cameron!

Votes were cast today for the 2018 Tower Hamlets Book Award, and Neill Cameron was the clear winner for ‘Mega Robo Rumble!’ Neill was present at the grand finale at East Wintergarden, Canary Wharf, along with ‘Illegal’ co-author Andrew Donkin, to receive the award in front of hundreds of children from Tower Hamlets and Newham schools.

Competition winners

Virginia Primary School won the Presentation competition with their interpretation of Nevermoor, with excellent performances from all the schools who took part.

Our creative competition inspired lots of drawings, poems and models. The following winners were awarded prizes on the day:

    • Zahra Mostafa from William Davis School for her model box inspired by Welcome to Nowhere
    • Oisis Campbell-Wright from William Davis School for his model of a scene from Nevermoor


  • Lemonie Choudhury from St Saviours School for her Nevermoor poster and Welcome to Nowhere poem
  • Farihah Amin from Central Foundation Girls School for her Welcome to Nowhere Poem
  • Sehzik Rahman, Alesha Zaman and Talha Bhuiyan from Vicarage Primary School for their collaborative comic strip inspired by Illegal

The Tower Hamlets Schools Library Services would like to thank Canary Wharf group and all of the staff at East Wintergarden for all of their work in supporting the Tower Hamlets Book Award this year.

Teacher Feedback

If you’ve been shadowing the award, please complete this short feedback survey . If you’re attending the grand finale, please complete this form after Wednesday!

Click here for the survey
Create your own user feedback survey

The Shortlist!

Image result for canary wharf group logo

Canary Wharf Group have kindly continued to sponsor the book Award by buying a set of books for each school and providing use of the East Wintergarden building as the venue for the grand finale event.

A free set of the shortlist will be sent to subscribing schools in the Autumn term, courtesy of Canary Wharf Group. Additional sets are available to buy at the discounted price of £39. Email

Subscribing schools will also recieve:

  • Book Award posters
  • Book award bookmarks for year 5 and 6 pupils

Welcome to Nowhere by Elizabeth Laird : Twelve year old Omar is from the beautiful and bustling city of Bosra, Syria. Omar wants to become a successful businessman but soon bombs are falling and Omar and his family have to flee their home and homeland. But where do you go when you can’t go home?

Caleb’s Cab  by Sally and Sylvain Chomet : Escaping from a surreal world where money means more than happiness, Caleb needs to find his father before the evil Money Mongers get to him first. His only hopes – a fake moustache and his dad’s taxi cab.

Mega Robo Rumble : Mega Robo Bros 2 by Neill Cameron : Alex and Freddy are brothers. They’re also robot (not so) secret agents defending East London from rampaging villains!

Beyond the Bright Sea by Lauren Wolk : Crow has always lived on the island, ever since, as a tiny baby, she was found washed up on the shore by gentle Osh. But as she grows older, questions start to arise about who she really is…

Nevermoor : The trials of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend : Morrigan is due to die on her twelfth birthday, and is less than happy when it turns out that her death is coming a year early. Unless, that is, a different fate is planned for her, involving the Wundrous Society, a giant cat and the phenomenally ginger Jupiter North.

Illegal by Eoin Colfer and Andrew Donkin : Ebo is one of thousands of refugees from West Africa, desperately attempting to make the crossing to the refugee camps in Italy. Following his sister and his brother he crosses the Sahara to Tripoli and finally to the merciless crossing over the sea.

The shortlist was be selected from the 2018 Must Read list and the 2018 Teen Booklist

About the Book Award

“Children need to be enthused to read and if they are, this will become a springboard for their achievements throughout the curriculum.”

(Report of the Inquiry into Overcoming the Barriers to Literacy, All-Party Parliamentary Group for Education, 2011)

The annual Tower Hamlets Book Award is just one of the exciting events made possible by subscriptions to the Tower Hamlets Schools Library Services, and is a free event for subscribing schools.

The Book Award is for pupils aged 10 to 13. The aim is to encourage children to read, to bring children together to enable debate and discussion about books and to encourage children to share the pleasure of reading.

Why join in?

Because the award bridges primary and secondary schools, it encourages pupils from different phases to share in reading events and work together.

Schools who have taken part in the award have found it to be highly beneficial in encouraging children to broaden their reading range and develop their literacy – not just in reading but also in speaking and listening, as a core part of any book award is discussion and debate.

The award, and the primary and secondary book lists, encourage pupils to make their own choices about what they read, and to discover new and exciting authors and stories.

Schools have the opportunity to attend the grand finale, meet authors and generally have a great time.

Timeline and guidelines

book award guidelines 2018

  • July : THBA Shortlist announced
  • July : Make sure you’re on our Book Award mailing list so that you’re kept up-to-date about this event. Email
  • August : Pupils can read the shortlist as part of their Summer Reading Challenge (see Idea Stores and public libraries)
  • September : Launch your book award reading groups
  • October : Registration for the THBA Grand Finale opens
    • If you’re taking part in the presentation competition, start planning your performances
  • November : Join us at the grand finale


Opening Times

Opening times

Please note that the PDC building is currently closed for access. The library will not be open during this time but staff can be reached via email or the web form.

We will update the website once the library re-opens which we expect to be from Monday 4th December.

Term time Monday – Thursday: 9am to 5pm

Fridays and holidays: 9am to 4:30pm