Scottish Book Trust launches Bookbug App

A woman using an iPad with two babies
Category: Press Releases
Tagged: bookbug, press

Scottish Book Trust, the national charity transforming lives through reading and writing, today unveiled the new Bookbug app. Kate Forbes MSP, Minister for Public Finance and Digital Economy, helped launch the new digital platform at the St Francis Community Centre in the Gorbals, Glasgow. Local families, key stakeholders and early year practitioners were encouraged to try the new app during the event after enjoying a Bookbug Session.

Scottish Book Trust received a grant from the Scottish Government to develop and deliver a digital strand to the Bookbug programme for parents and practitioners. The Bookbug app project began in June 2017, with the aim of sharing the benefits of Bookbug with more families across Scotland. The app is another way for families across Scotland to access the benefits of the Bookbug programme and help families fit songs and rhymes into their day-to-day routine.

With the help of Bookbug practitioners and families across Scotland, Scottish Book Trust co-created a new Bookbug app full of songs and nursery rhymes to ensure it met their needs. The app will also allow families to find their nearest Bookbug session.

From today the new Bookbug app will be available to download for free from the App Store and Google Play. 


Bookbug App Features

  • Offline app functionality: Connectivity is a big issue for many families and practitioners. Scottish Book Trust has ensured content is downloadable so the app will work offline, ensuring Bookbug can be accessed by everyone.
  • Library of songs and rhymes: Users of the app can listen to their favourite songs and rhymes, learn the words and actions or just dance along. Song and Rhymes will also be available in Scots and Gaelic.
  • Personalised playlists: Users will be able to personalise content and build their own song and rhyme playlist (for up to five different users). Great for practitioners planning Bookbug Sessions or different members of the family.
  • Find a Bookbug Session: Using geo-location or by inputting their postcode, this feature helps families find their nearest Bookbug Session, so that they can enjoy a session with other families at their local library or community venue.
  • Categories: Songs are categorised to enable families to find suitable songs and rhymes to share with little ones at different times of day.
  • Instrumental versions: This feature allows users to sing along in their own language, or listen to an instrumental version of their favourite song or rhyme.
  • News: Information about the Bookbug programme will also be available for parents, carers and Early Years practitioners.


Marc Lambert, CEO of Scottish Book Trust, said:

“We’re excited to launch the new Bookbug app as part of Scottish Book Trust’s wider digital strategy and our aim to be a digital leader in our field. We trust the app will become a well-used aid for families and the Early Years professionals who support them, building on and amplifying all the good Bookbug already does. Our thanks to Dubit for working with us to create this fantastic digital platform, which should be an asset to every parent and EY professional in Scotland.”


Kate Forbes MSP, Minister for Public Finance and Digital Economy, said:

“I’m delighted to see the Bookbug app launched. This is an exciting and pioneering project that encourages an early love of song and rhymes amongst children. It also provides a great opportunity for parents and their wee ones to spend time together, having fun and learning. The app makes the valuable benefits of Bookbug available to even more families across Scotland.”


Notes to Editors

For media enquiries please contact Keara Donnachie, Press Officer at Scottish Book Trust, on or 0131 524 0184.


Scottish Book Trust

Scottish Book Trust is a national charity changing lives through reading and writing. We inspire and support the people of Scotland to read and write for pleasure through programmes and outreach work that include:

  • Gifting books to every child in Scotland to ensure families of all backgrounds can share the joy of books at home.
  • Working with teachers to inspire children to develop a love of reading, creating innovative classroom activities, book awards and author events.
  • Supporting Scotland’s diverse writing community with our training, awards and writing opportunities.
  • Funding a range of author events for the public to enjoy and promoting Scottish writing to people worldwide.   @scottishbktrust



The Bookbug programme is managed by Scottish Book Trust and run in partnership with libraries, health professionals and nurseries. The programme benefits from sponsorship from children’s publishers and central funding from the Scottish Government through a grant from the Children and Families Directorate. Bookbug also receives support from Local Authorities, Library Services and Health Boards through the provision of local staff time and logistics solutions.

Bookbug Sessions are run by local libraries and community groups. Over 23,000 Bookbug Sessions happen across Scotland every year. These are free, fun-filled story and rhyme sessions for babies to four-year-olds, attended by thousands of parents and children a year. Details of local Bookbug Sessions can be found here.

Bookbug’s targeted outreach programme, Bookbug for the Home, trains Early Years practitioners to give support to families on a one-to-one basis. Since 2012, Bookbug for the Home has helped over 14,000 families, encouraging parents to do more talking, book sharing and singing with their children.

Scottish Book Trust also supports the delivery of Dolly Parton Imagination Library in Scotland (free books delivered monthly to every Looked After Child aged 0-5). @Bookbug_SBT


Creative Scotland

Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here. We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life. We distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery. For further information about Creative Scotland please visit

Follow us @creativescots and