Newcastle children’s book author recognized by David Attenborough


An author from the North East was recognized by Sir David Attenborough for his children’s books.

Scott Barker, from Newcastle, has created a series of activity books for children to engage in climate change and biodiversity loss.

The 32-year-old author and illustrator is delighted to have received an encouraging letter from Sir David Attenborough because of the books spreading the message of the importance of the environment to children.

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The letter read: “Dear Scott Barker, thank you for sending me a copy of your children’s book. I wish you every success. Sincerely, David Attenborough.”

Sir David is also featured in illustrated form in the series of books.

The series, published by Make ideas believe, and illustrated by Scott Barker, are made with recycled paper and vegetable-based inks, and packed with stickers and games that engage kids in everything from recycling to eco-friendly homes to overfishing.



One of Scott Barker’s children’s books

The first copies of the series were donated to the REfUSE Café in Chester le Street.

REfUSE Café, a non-profit social enterprise, collects 10 to 13 tonnes of food per month from retailers in the Northeast who, for all kinds of reasons, have found the food unsaleable.

REfUSE aims to educate and raise awareness about waste and environmental issues, while also creating community by serving good food to all who want it, on the basis of ‘pay what you decide’.



Nikki Drivers and Scott Barker standing in front of the REfUSE cafe in Chester Le Street

Scott has been a part of REfUSE Café before and knows how necessary and appreciated every gesture is.

He said: “Refuse Café is an important part of the community and, for some families, an indispensable support.

“The founders and volunteers do an amazing job every day, which is why my editors and I decided to donate a few boxes of our new ‘My Precious Planet’ series of books. Hopefully these books will play a small role in educating children in the community on how we can all help be kinder to our world. “

REfUSE Co-Founder and Director Nikki Drivers added, “Scott has such determination and talent, these books are a great gift for the cafe. We love to see the kids enjoying our playground, so I hope these books help them understand why we are doing what we are doing here.

REfUSE Café is opposite the Black Horse on Front Street, Chester le Street. It’s open Tuesday through Saturday, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., and serves hot food, coffees, and cakes on a pay-as-you-go basis.

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Grover Z. Barnes

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