PRIMARY schools across Basildon took part in a special reading challenge which pitted them against each other in a “Gladiatorial”-style contest.

The Reading Gladiators challenge was held at Ghyllgrove Community Junior School, The Gore, Basildon, yesterday.

The other schools taking part in the challenge were: Lee Chapel Primary School, The Willows Primary School, Whitmore Primary School and Laindon Park.

The event included quiz questions as well as artistic and dramatic events to test the children’s skills.

The national Reading Gladiators programme lasts for a year and Gladiators read eight books throughout the period. Each book is carefully selected to extend the reading experience of the children, with a range of genres represented.

The collection is designed to move the readers from familiar reading material to more thoughtful, reflective reading. Gladiators read books by established and recently published authors.