Youngsters dressed as characters from books as part of a day encouraging pupils to read more.

Templars Primary and Nursery School, in Cressing Road, Witham, hosted activities last Friday as part of the Get Witham Reading scheme.

Teacher Louise Heel said: “Reading is important in all areas of the curriculum and everyday life.

“It is great to have the support from so many different people to promote this in our school and local area.”

The Get Witham Reading initiative was launched by the town’s MP, Priti Patel, in 2012.

Friday’s event aimed to bring children, parents and teachers together through interactive reading workshops and activities.

Ms Patel said: “By encouraging more leisurely reading amongst pupils, this initiative is intended to help shape young creative minds while fostering greater educational success in our local schools.

“I commend the leadership of the organisers and teaching staff at Templars Primary and Nursery School for educating pupils at a very young age about all the joys and benefits of leisurely reading.”

The school has been commended by Ofsted inspectors for encouraging pupils to enjoy a wide range of authors and subjects.