Chase UK

More than half of U.K adults believe having access to libraries and books as a child had a positive impact on their future career success

6 min | 30 May 2024

  • 59% believe access to libraries and books as a child played a significant role in their future career successes
  • 57% said that children who have access to libraries at school are more likely to have higher earning potential or increased employability
  • Chase is marking the third year of its school libraries programme in partnership with the National Literacy Trust and supported by Penguin Books

London, 30 May, 2024: New research from Chase demonstrates the critical importance of access to libraries in childhood in determining future success as an adult.

More than half of U.K. adults (59%) believe access to libraries and books as a child played a significant role in their future career successes, while 57% said that children who have access to libraries at school are more likely to have higher earning potential or increased employability.

The research, which surveyed over 2,000 U.K. adults, has been published to mark the third year of Chase’s school libraries programme. The ambition of the programme is to help children and young people unlock their future potential by improving access to school libraries and books in under resourced communities throughout the U.K.

Highlighting the crucial role libraries play in supporting children’s development and future potential, the research also found that children who read are more likely in later life to have:

  • More rounded world views (67%)
  • Improved mental health (66%)
  • Ability to relax (60%)

Deborah Keay, U.K. CMO at Chase, said: “The research shows the positive impact reading can have on children and the vital role school libraries play in encouraging a love of reading at an early age.

“Developing early reading skills can unlock a child’s potential, improving their prospects and ultimately building pathways to future employment.

“Our programme aims to provide children with access to a range of literature and a safe space in which to enjoy it.”

Jonathan Douglas, CBE, CEO of the National Literacy Trust, said: “1 in 4 state primary schools in the UK’s most disadvantaged communities don’t have a library. We know that the cost-of-living crisis is hitting hard, and that having access to a dedicated reading space and the opportunity to read for enjoyment can make all the difference to a child at primary school. We are delighted that Chase is continuing its support for the Libraries for Primaries campaign and supporting a further 100 schools across the UK this year.”

Whilst 77% of adults said they were regular readers growing up, 40% admitted they wished they read more as a child. For those who read as a child, almost a third (30%) said their favourite book allowed them to escape into another world, while 12% felt that it sparked a lifelong love of reading and literature.

More than a third of adults (36%) agreed that school libraries and a diverse range of books are top of the list when it comes to the most important school resources available to children.

When it comes to the top five key life skills that come from reading, parents identified these as:

  • An increased vocabulary (69%)
  • Curiosity (53%)
  • Creativity (49%)
  • Communication (48%)
  • Confidence (29%)

Chase's partnership with the National Literacy Trust to continue for a third year

In 2024, Chase has expanded its school libraries programme to four new areas (Belfast, Glasgow, Greenwich (London), and Liverpool), while also providing additional support to three existing regions (Edinburgh, Manchester, and Cardiff) with the resources they need to inspire a love of reading.

This year’s programme includes:

  • A total of 100 new library spaces inclusive of 6 brand new libraries and 94 enhanced library spaces in primary schools across the U.K. This will equip a further 32,082 children in disadvantaged areas with new library spaces designed to improve their reading environment
  • Access to 40,000 new and diverse books donated by Penguin Books to inspire a love of reading
  • Equipping 193 primary school teachers with bespoke face-to-face training to support them with implementing a reading for pleasure strategy and creating powerful reading role models in the school community

In its two years since launch, Chase’s school libraries programme has seen over 107,000 children at 312 primary schools enjoy improved libraries and enhanced reading spaces. So far a total of 140,400 books have either been generously donated by Penguin Books or funded by Chase giving children access to a range of new literature whilst the programme has also offered 570 teachers bespoke training modules to equip them with the skills needed to inspire a passion for reading that lasts a lifetime. Beyond the classroom, almost 19,000 parents and carers received support and advice on how to encourage their children with reading at home.

The Chase school libraries programme is part of the Libraries for Primaries campaign founded by the National Literacy Trust and Penguin Books in 2021. The campaign brings together cross-sector organisations to address the lack of investment in UK primary school libraries and has transformed 1,000 primary school libraries in communities throughout the UK where low literacy and poverty are having the greatest impact on children’s lives.

Notes to Editors:

Opinium conducted an online survey of 2,000 UK adults (18+), including 1,219 parents, between 5th and 9th April 2024 and weighted the results to be nationally representative.

About Chase in the U.K.

Chase is the consumer banking business of JPMorgan Chase & Co (NYSE: JPM), a leading global financial services firm with assets of $4.1 trillion and operations worldwide.

The U.K. bank is designed specifically to meet the needs of customers in the country, providing a range of banking products and features. Launched in September 2021, Chase serves over two million U.K. customers and was recently named Best British Bank and Best Current Account Provider for the second consecutive year at the 2024 British Bank Awards. It was also named Banking App of the Year, App-only Savings Provider of the Year, and Consumers' Choice at the Moneyfacts Consumer Awards 2024.

In the U.K., Chase is a trading name of J.P. Morgan Europe Limited. J.P. Morgan Europe Limited is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. For more information, go to

About Libraries for Primaries

Chase is a flagship Libraries for Primaries partner. Founded in November 2021 by the National Literacy Trust and Penguin Books, the Libraries for Primaries campaign (formerly the Primary School Library Alliance) is a group of cross-sector organisations that work to address the lack of investment in primary school libraries. For more information see here: (Opens in new window) (Opens in new window)

All information correct at time of publication

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