MORE than 50 children joined a summer competition at their local library to 'disguise animals as secret agents'.

The school-age artists used sombreros, sunglasses and even Santa hats to make a not-so-secret mural at Grove Library.

On Saturday morning dozens of them went back to the library to pick up prizes in the contest where all participants were winners.

Library manager Kathryn Leech said: "We've been blown away by the children's creativity and enthusiasm for this activity, and more than 50 animal agents are still on display in the junior area display board for all visitors to enjoy looking at.

"We had asked children to create their own 'animal agent' by selecting and colouring-in an animal, and then turning them into a secret agent by giving them a disguise."

The crafty competition was run to promote The Reading Agency's national annual children's Summer Reading Challenge, which was this year themed 'Animal Agents'.

The Friends of Grove Library agreed to give every child who took part in the art a prize of an animal story book.

These were awarded by the Friends' former chairman Brian Edwards on Saturday morning.

Any child who took part and did not collect their prize at the weekend can collect it when they are next in the library.

Ms Leech added: "The official end date of the Summer Reading Challenge is Saturday, September 16, so if any children have not yet finished reading their six books and collecting their stickers, there is still time to do so.

"All finishers will also receive a wrist band, medal and certificate, and in Grove Library we usually give them a round of applause as well, so do encourage your children to come and collect their goodies."