Babcock International, the aerospace and defence company, is proud to launch a new children’s book to coincide with National Storytelling Week, which is running across the UK from 1 to 8 February.
Written by Warships Senior Support Engineer Katherine Terris and illustrated by local art student April Howard, the Devonport Royal Dockyard themed book ‘Porty’s Whizzing Recovery’, focuses on marine themed characters, from young ship Porty, to Simon the seagull and Trevor the submarine.
The book aims to take young readers on a journey of discovery about some of the work that takes place at the Devonport site. It has already received positive feedback from young audiences after Katherine read it to a group of children at an on-site event for the children of some of Babcock’s employees at the dockyard.
During National Storytelling Week, more children will have the opportunity to learn about Porty and his friends as a number of sessions, led by Babcock employees, are being held in partnership with libraries and schools. Copies of this publication, aimed at children aged between 5 and 10, are already available to borrow from local libraries in the area.
There is also a chance for more schools to be involved, as copies of book will be distributed to primary schools across the city, with particular emphasis on those in close proximity to Devonport Royal Dockyard.
Katherine felt inspired to write this colourful story to try and give younger people an idea of what happens at the dockyard and to pique their interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) based jobs. “The idea of writing a children’s book to raise awareness about what we do here at Devonport Royal Dockyard in an age appropriate way really appealed to me. It is important that young people learn about STEM based careers and that is partly what I’ve tried to introduce in the book, recognising that readers are of primary school age.
“There’s also a large number of children around the Plymouth area whose parents work for Babcock, and the book helps them to learn about what happens at the Devonport Dockyard site. Thank you very much to April for doing such a great job with the illustrations. We hope that the book is a big hit!”
Mike Homer, Managing Director Devonport Royal Dockyard Limited, added: “Many thanks to Katherine and April for producing this fantastic learning resource for children. Having the opportunity to go into schools and libraries and share it during National Storytelling Week is fantastic. If we can help to raise awareness about STEM subjects and where they can take you, that would be of great benefit. We look forward to making Porty’s Whizzing Recovery available to primary schools and libraries in the Plymouth area and hope that it will be popular with the children.”
Matt Gilley Photography