THOUSANDS of children across Trafford dressed up as their favourite characters for World Book Day.

At Loreto Preparatory School, Tweedledum and Tweedledee were among the young readers who donned literary fancy dress for a colourful World Book Day.

Kate McMichael, aged 10, as Tweedledee, said: “I like sad stories because they tell you all about life,” while her Alice in Wonderland counterpart Clementine Clarke, as Tweedledum, added: “I like animal stories because we have so many pets at home.”

They were joined by Eve Whamough, as the Golden Ticket, Amelia Morgan as the Cat in the Hat and Madison Grace as the first suffragette, who said: “I like adventure stories because they stir up your adrenalin.”

Loreto Preparatory School headmistress Anne Roberts said: “More importantly it gives everyone an opportunity to discuss their favourite books and just why they like reading them so much.”

It wasn't just the staff and students who donned fancy dress at Loreto Grammar School for World Book Day — the building also got a makeover.

Pupils dressed classroom doors in their favourite book titles with The Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm, Catch 22 and the Jungle Book among the decorative additions.

Ava Cloudsdale and Emily Lambe and Evelyn Barnes joined English teacher and organiser Helen McKay, as the Mad Hatter, who said: “In the digital age when young people receive so much information so quickly it's so refreshing to see their continuing passion for literature and how engrossed the girls get in the development of character, plot, action and atmosphere.”

Meanwhile, at St Antony's Catholic College English department, staff taught lessons in classic costume as they set the example for World Book Day.

Improving literacy has been at the heart of the Urmston faith school's dramatic improvement in academic performance over the past five years and World Book Day saw every department use literary allusions in their lesson planning.

English teachers Eleanor Boyce dressed as Tigger from the Winnie the Poo, Kim Potter as the Scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz and head of English Claire Lambert as the Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland.

Miss Lambert said: “We had quizzes and games in English and literary links to all the other lessons built into the teachers' planning. We launched the book club's new title Mortal Engines by Philip Reeves and, yes, we dressed up as characters from classic children's literature.

“Literacy is the gateway to success in all subjects and is of paramount importance.”