KES Library constellation photos  (3 of 18)

The Library

Our Library is a central hub for the school.

In 2019, the library was completely renovated, creating a warm, modern, and open space for pupils to study, read and learn in. Spread over two floors the library area provides a mix of formal work space and comfortable quiet reading areas.

The library is home to over 15,000 books, including fiction, non-fiction, magazines, and academic texts, providing students with a wealth of learning, and reading opportunities. The library also subscribes to databases and resources specifically for Upper School and Sixth Form students, such as JSTOR and MASSOLIT. 

The library is open from 8.00 am to 5.15 pm each school day. We also have an e-library available to students for use in the school holidays. 


Author Visits

Throughout the year, the library organises author visits. The most recent include: 

Matt Killeen

Year 7 pupils were fortunate enough to have a lecture by Matt Killeen. This was well placed to help mark 'World Book Week,' and 'International Women's' Day,' with the main protagonist in Matt Killeen's book being a young girl. Matt Killeen talked about his literary inspiration as a child and how this fed his ideas and interest in the history of the WWII. He posed many questions for the pupils to consider relating to war, people, secret operatives (i.e., Sophie Scholl from the White Rose movement), the resistance, perspective, the impact on both sides and the importance to find out all the facts. He also read some choice sections from his book, 'Author, monster, Spy,' to inspire the pupils prior to delivering a writing workshop.

Tom Palmer 

Award-winning children’s author Tom Palmer (and his dog, Finn!) joined us on Zoom. Palmer has written over 50 books, with the most recent three focusing on historical fiction, specifically the Second World War and child survivors of the Holocaust. Students learnt how Tom Palmer researched his ideas for the books, shared some invaluable writing tips and told them all about his latest novel ‘After the War’, a book based on the lives of three holocaust survivor children, who move to Britain after the war (one of whom came to Southampton!)

Maz Evans 

Year 7 Pupils were treated to a virtual visit from author Maz Evans, who read a chapter from her Waterstones book of the year, ‘Who Let the Gods Out’. This event was planned as part of our Extended Studies programme, promoting the idea of mindful reading. Pupils were then able to ask questions to Maz Evans about the book, concept of the story and the writing process.

Library Leaders

The library recruits library leaders each year, who are at the forefront of running their library. They are reading role models for their peers and help the librarians with their daily jobs around the library. Library leaders get the chance to be involved in organising literary events, literary festivals, trips to the British Library and exclusive competitions. Eventually our library leaders are responsible for the desk and helping other students (and staff) with book choices and recommendations.

World Book Week

At King Edward's we not only celebrate World Book Day each year, we extend the celebrations to a whole week of all things books, reading and literary geniuses! We are very lucky to have a Library team who organise a whole host of activities and events for our students to enjoy during the KES World Book Week. Each World Book Week has a theme attached to it which drives the week's activities, in 2024 the theme was 'Banned Books', you can read more about World Book Week at King Edward's in 2024 here.