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Book published by UCLan nominated for prestigious global children’s literature award

Cold Bath Street receives 2019 Carnegie Medal nomination

A book produced by the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan)’s own publishing house has been nominated for one of the most prestigious children’s book prizes in the world.

Cold Bath Street, written by New York Times best-selling author AJ Hartley and released in April this year, has been nominated for the 2019 Carnegie Medal, which is awarded annually to an outstanding book written in English for children and young people. It is one of the oldest children’s book awards in the world and is often described as the “gold standard” of children’s literature. Terry Prachett is listed amongst previous winners and Harry Potter author JK Rowling has been nominated twice for the coveted award.

AJ Hartley’s Cold Bath Street is a story centred around the Miley Tunnels that lie under Preston and are supposedly haunted. The book was edited, project-managed, designed and produced by students on UCLan’s MA Publishing course in the only student-led, student-run publishing house in the world, UCLan Publishing.

UCLan Associate Professor of Publishing and Head of the Publishing House Debbie Williams said: “We are overjoyed to be nominated. For small publishing houses such as ours to make this list is almost unheard of so it’s a game changer for us. It means we’re taken seriously in the publishing world alongside many of the large, well-established publishing houses and will open up many opportunities internationally.”

Cold Bath Street author AJ Hartley said: “'The great thing about major awards is that they raise the visibility of books that might otherwise be considered ‘niche,’ ‘special-interest’ or - as in this case - overly local. It would be wonderful for the world to discover this story of a northern town, its people and its culture, and for me that would be a huge honour.”

Nominations for the Carnegie Medal come from librarians rather than publishers themselves putting their books forward for consideration. If Cold Bath Street makes the final shortlist next February, it means a huge increase in sales in both the UK and internationally as book sellers and libraries scrabble to stock all titles on the list.

The book is currently under consideration by 68 publishers around the world and has attracted interest from film and games producers. Following the success of Cold Bath Street, UCLan Publishing is already working with AJ Hartley on another children’s book, Monsters in the Mirror, due to be published in March next year.

The overall winner of the 2019 Carnegie Medal will be announced in June 2019.

Lyndsey Boardman | 05 November 2018