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Ladybird Books

541 of 1169 nominations


Ladybird Books

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Ladybird Books

The Ladybird Books brand is as internationally recognised as that of the publishers who acquired it in 1999 – Penguin. Ladybird books have now been translated into more than 60 languages. The book on the 1981 wedding of Charles and Diana – produced in just five days – sold one-and-a-half million copies.

It all began in 1915, when Loughborough-based Wills & Hepworth launched their first children’s books under the Ladybird imprint, with the aim of producing "pure and healthy literature" for children. The classic pocket-sized, mini-hardback Ladybird books first appeared in 1940. Part of the appeal of the books was their low price, which stayed at two shillings and sixpence (12.5p) for over 30 years.

In 1964, the company launched its acclaimed Key Words Reading Scheme, publishing small-vocabulary books about everyday British family life, aimed at primary-school children. The books are still in print and have sold over 90 million copies.

Photo: Courtesy Penguin Books


Your comments

Ladybird Books have been in print since the 1940s. The original pocket-sized or mini hardback format is still available today and is much loved by both parents and children as well as collectors who will pay hundreds of pounds of original editions. Ladybird is an instantly recognisable book brand, standing at the forefront of children's publishing and synonymous with value, innovation and education. Ladybird has been part of our lives for over sixty years, teaching generations of children to read and enjoy their first experience of books. The famous red beetle is definitely worthy of a place on the icons list!

Jennifer Norton

As a citizen of Loughborough, i have fond memories of the small building that produced these fine books. We used to take trips to it, used to buy books directly from it. A true icon of English childrens literature

For a concise history of Ladybird Books and for a complete series of books they published between 1940 and 1980 visit www.theweeweb.co.uk - this website is the ultimate guide to Ladybird Books.
Kay Wilson

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I nominate the English weather.