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Literacy charity Read Easy UK has reported a record 104% increase in signs ups to its adult reading programme in 2022, fuelled by the BBC TV show ‘Jay Blades: Learning to Read at 51’. The charity also saw a surge in interest from new volunteers and those who wanted to pioneer a new Read Easy group in their area. Read Easy UK now has 65 affiliated groups and 16 Pioneering groups around the UK, with over 1350 volunteers providing free one-to-one reading coaching for adults who are unable to read.

‘Jay Blades: Learning to Read at 51’ aired on 26th January 2022, and followed Repair Shop presenter Jay Blades’ experience of learning to read as an adult, using Read Easy UK’s 1-1 coaching programme. Readers meet volunteer coaches twice a week to follow ‘Turning Pages’ – an adult reading programme originally developed for prisons.

Jay concealed his inability to read until he was in his...

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