Target Who Books Donated to Schools: 9673
Inspired Donations by Other People: 416

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Donating 11,000 Books to School Libraries to support Children's Literacy

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Honouring Jon Pertwee

We are Target Who and this whole project is our way of saying thank you to Doctor Who for the influence it had during our childhoods and how these books encouraged us to embrace reading.  In the run up to Doctor Who’s 50th Anniversary we wanted to also honour the actors who have portrayed the Doctor over the years, so last month we sent a small bundle of special books to one of their childhood schools.  Some schools took the time to write back and thank us and the first of these was Frensham Heights, where in in his own words the late, great Jon Pertwee “discovered scholastic happiness”.

We received a wonderful handwritten note of thanks from Headmaster Andrew Fisher, it reads:

Somehow pen and ink seems more appropriate for a Doctor Who related letter - not sure why, timeless I guess.

Thank you so much for your kind gift to our library - we are delighted.  We are aware of Jon Pertwee’s link to the school; he spoke very beautifully about Frensham in a radio interview which warmed my heart considerably.  Very best of luck with your scheme - worthy and fun a great combination.

All the Best

It wasn’t just on radio that Jon talked about Frensham.  He says the following in his autobiography, Moon Boots and Dinner Suits:

It was in 1935, at the age of sixteen that I entered Frensham Heights. The school, a vast Victorian mansion, was an ancient pile of great importance. Its main building, towering behind an imposing drive and a hundred acres of beautifully laid out parkland, housed, fed and slept us; its stables, with their half-opened doors, were our class-rooms. Above, in converted lofts, were the weaving looms, pottery wheels and kilns. There were also carpenters’ shops, engineering workshops, green-houses, and a printing press.

I was helped and encouraged to dig out and build an open air theatre from the side of a hill, overlooking a small wood. It’s still there, just – I saw it through the weeds only three years past. In that same theatre, we put on amongst ourselves two stage productions of near professional standard. One was Twelfth Night, and the other – an extraordinary choice for a school play – Lady Precious Stream, the traditionally presented Chinese play that had had such enormous success in the West End of London.

For the first time in my life I really began to learn. Not because I had to, but because I wanted to. The teachers were interesting and knowledgeable of their subjects, and the curriculum was intelligent, allowing a student to work several one hour study periods consecutively, thus enabling him to complete the ‘peak’ set him by his tutor.

We are Target Who and it has been an honour to place some of our books into the school that meant so much to Jon.

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