Royal Mail

Royal Mail

July 07, 2009 09:41 ET

Royal Mail Delivers Dolly Parton's Imagination Library to Children in the Remotest Inhabited Place on Earth

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - July 7, 2009) -

Editors Note: There is a video associated with this Press Release.

Royal Mail has made a very special delivery on behalf of music legend Dolly Parton, by delivering her Imagination Library to children in the remotest inhabited place on earth, Tristan da Cuhna.

The very special delivery of books to the UK's most remote dependent territory follows the Imagination Library's launch in the UK in December 2007. Thousands of children across the UK are now part of the Imagination Library, an educational programme for pre-school children which delivers an age-appropriate book to participating childrens' homes every month, from the month they are born until they reach the age of five.

The first books from the Imagination Library to arrive on Tristan da Cuhna were met with delight by the island's 13 under fives. Tasha Reilly, Deputy Administrator for Tristan da Cuhna explained: "With a population of just 264, these children represent, in very real terms the island's future. The books will provide a wonderful link to the "off island world" as well as an important first boost to their education".

Since Dolly launched the library in the UK, the Imagination Library has been adopted by communities across the UK, with children in White City, London most recently joining the scheme. Its role out in the UK builds on its success in the US and Canada - the Imagination Library now distributes over six million books per year to over 500,000 children on both sides of the Atlantic, in addition to the 13 children on Tristan da Cuhna living in the heart of it.

Dolly Parton explained: It's my dream that every child has a library of books which their parents can read to them from the moment they are born. Children in the UK are already receiving books from the Imagination Library so I'm delighted that they will now be reaching kids in such a remote place like Tristan da Cuhna.

"I would love to see every single child have the opportunity to be a part of the programme. I know that's a big dream, but you know, I have always been a mighty big dreamer."

The books travelling to Tristan da Cuhna had to undertake one of Royal Mail's most unique delivery routes on their journey from the Library's UK base. The first leg of the journey was a 6,000 mile flight to Cape Town, followed by a week long voyage of over 1,500 miles via fishing vessel.

Mark Thomson, Royal Mail Director commented: "Our people are used to going the extra mile when it comes to delivering letters and packets, but the route to Tristan da Cuhna is perhaps one of our most challenging. We're delighted to be helping the Imagination Library reach children not just in the UK, but now in the most remote inhabited place on earth."

Dolly Parton launched the scheme in her home town of Sevier, Tennessee, in 1996. The scheme works by local sponsors paying for children in their community to receive the books. In 2007 Rotherham Council became the first UK authority to join the Imagination Library, which is part of Ms Parton's umbrella charity, the Dollywood Foundation, with more communities signing up in the past 18 months.

Anyone wishing to find out more about how they can work with the Imagination Library and bring it to pre-school children in their area should visit www.imaginationlibrary.com, contact nhunter.imaginationlibrary@gmx.com or call 07984 346 592.

For further information on Royal Mail's wide range of international business and consumer mailing services visit www.royalmail.com.

Royal Mail is a trading name of Royal Mail Group plc. Registered number 4138203.

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To view the video associated with this press release, please visit the following link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fNDXUhYpobI

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