London will get 'book benches' through public art project

Beginning next summer, benches depicting famous literary works set in London will be popping up all over the city.

Kieran Doherty/Reuters
Benches depicting various literary works will come to London next summer as part of a fundraiser for the National Literacy Trust.

London’s public benches will soon be getting a little more literary.

Beginning next summer, a public art program designed to promote fun reading and stories taking place in the city will take the form of benches that will look like giant books. The benches will be scattered across the city and will be based on such novels as “Peter Pan,” Michael Rosen’s book “We’re Going on a Bear Hunt,” and others.

The project, titled “Books about Town,” is a fundraiser for the National Literacy Project and the benches will be auctioned at the end of the display time. According to the Guardian, the benches will first make an appearance next July and be on view for 10 weeks.

Some benches, such as “Pan” and “Bear,” have already been commissioned by businesses. The National Literacy Trust is reaching out to businesses to sponsor benches and offering the businesses the choice of choosing the book their bench will depict or leaving it to the NLT. According to the Guardian, the NLT hopes 50 to 70 businesses will sign up for the project.

“We are delighted to be launching Books about Town to spread the love of reading across the capital,” NLT director Jonathan Douglas said in a statement.

What famous London-set work would you want to see on a bench?

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