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Storytime at Drax to bring employees and their families together during lockdown

Some of the world’s best loved children’s books are being read and recorded by employees at Drax Group as part of an initiative to support each other and their families during the Covid lockdown.

Around 40 people working for the energy company from across its power generation, biomass production and energy supply businesses have contributed to the ‘Storytime’ audio library project, reading and recording a few chapters of the books each.

The energy company owns and operates Drax Power Station in North Yorkshire which is the UK’s largest single site renewable power generator and the largest decarbonisation project in Europe following its conversion from coal to use sustainable biomass.

The Storytime initiative is part of Drax’s wellbeing work which aims to help employees live well and stay connected.

Drax Group CEO Will Gardiner, who recorded the first chapter of Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory for the initiative, said:

“The idea to record the stories for children came about because we wanted to bring people together and help each other out during the lockdown.

“Telling stories is something us humans have been doing for literally thousands of years, it brings people together and creates a shared experience – which is something I think we’re all missing, to some extent, at the moment.

“Reading or listening to a story is a great way to escape into another world. I’ve always enjoyed reading to my own children when they were younger and I hope the recordings will provide others at Drax and their families with some entertainment, and make us all feel a little closer together, even though we are apart during this lockdown.”

The first two books to have been recorded by employees from across Drax’s operations in the UK and USA, are Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl and The Ice Monster by David Walliams.

The audio library will be launched at Drax during National Storytelling Week (Jan 30 to Feb 6) with the stories being posted on the Drax Group employee intranet service for people to download and listen to at home.

If the initiative proves to be popular with employees and their families, further stories will be recorded with titles chosen via an online ballot.

During the Covid pandemic, Drax has supported the communities it operates in through a number of initiatives, including donating over 850 laptops with internet access to schoolchildren across Britain who were unable to learn from home, supplying free energy to 170 care homes and backing a business debtline to offer support for small businesses.