Schools across Winchester are celebrating World Book Day, with pupils and teachers dressing up as their favourite fictional characters.

Taking place on March 2, people across the nation are encouraged to take part in the festivities by wearing costumes that represent characters from stories such as Harry Potter to Horrible Histories. 

More than 200 students at St Swithun’s Prep School in Winchester dressed up and took part in the day of fun-filled activities.

READ MORE: World Book Day 2023: Send us your fantastic photos

St Swithun’s prep head Mr Jonathan Brough said: "A love and passion for reading are some of the most important gifts we can give to our students for any number of reasons including their all-round wellbeing and their academic success both now and in the future.

"We believe in creating an environment where children love to learn, and learn to meet life’s challenges head-on.

"As part of that, we work hard to improve the diversity of literature in the children’s diet by encouraging them to try out new books and discover new authors. World Book Day is the perfect chance to do this."

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To begin World Book Day, students took part in a parade to show off their amazing costumes. Even the teachers and staff got involved by dressing up as the colourful crayons from the book The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt and Oliver Jeffers. 

Students and parents were encouraged to design their own costumes while taking part in Readathon, with the pupils fundraising to help bring the magic of books and stories to children in hospitals across the UK. Year 2 pupils also visited Waterstones in the Brooks Shopping Centre. 

Are your children all dressed up for World Book Day today? If so, then send us your photos. We'd love to see all the creative costumes you have this year, whether they are homemade or otherwise.