THE owner of a Bridgwater bookshop said she is ‘over the moon’ after winning a £2,000 grant to improve her shop.

Sam Carr, owner of The Snug Bookshop & Cafe in East Quay, is one of 10 independent bookshops across the UK to win the grant from The HarperCollins Literacy Project which aims to create projects that support early years literacy in communities.

The shop and cafe has been open for seven months and Sam said she was ‘overwhelmed’ when she found out she had won the grant.

She said: “I am absolutely over the moon and delighted to have won this award.

“We are just a small bookshop in Bridgwater, I didn’t think we had a chance of winning as we have only been open for seven months.

“The £2,000 that we have won will be useful in helping us to encourage more young people to read.

“Firstly, I want to make an area of the bookshop a dedicated reading space for children with bean bags and finger puppets which we can use in our reading group. I want to create something that is really nice and interactive.

“I also want to work with nursery’s around Bridgwater and do courses about reading for fun so we can get more children in Bridgwater reading for pleasure and finally I want to work with parents to promote a love for reading.”

Sam said business has been steady at the shop since she opened last year and she is looking forward to making changes to improve literacy in children in Bridgwater.

“To be recognised in this way has given me a boost and let me know that I have done the right thing in opening this shop,” Sam said.

“It is amazing that the literacy needs of Bridgwater are being thought of and I am excited to make changes to my shop to improve it in the future.”

A HarperCollins spokesman said: “We loved Samantha’s enthusiastic pitch for a grant to help the snug help young families enjoy reading at home, as well as working with local schools.

“The shop has only been running a few months but obviously has quickly become an important place in the community, and we’re delighted to award them one of our Literacy Project grants.”