ACDC's Brian Johnson works with Newcastle hospital to narrate new book for children

ACDC's Brian Johnson with the book that he has narrated, 'Bobby's Big Day Out'.
-Credit: (Image: NHS)

ACDC's Brian Johnson is working with the Great North Children's Hospital to narrate a new book for children with sensory differences.

The North East Rockstar is narrating the short-illustrated story, titled 'Bobby's Big Day Out', which follows children’s occupational therapy mascot Bobby and his mum as they visit the hospital. Jointly funded by The Great North Children’s Hospital Foundation and the Newcastle United Football Club players, the book is part of The Sensational Thinking Project.

Founded in 2018 by Newcastle Hospitals’ children’s occupational therapy team, the project supports children and families living with sensory processing differences.

On narrating the book, Brian Johnson said: "Reading the book for the Sensational Thinking Project, supported by the Great North Children’s Hospital Foundation, was a real pleasure. I was delighted to be asked and it's great to be involved in something that can hopefully help children before coming into hospital, especially one in my home town."

Sensational Thinking Project lead, Cheryl Gascoigne, said: "Bobby’s Big Day Out aims to raise awareness of sensory challenges faced by some children and young people when coming into hospital. It’s designed to be fun and engaging and shows how Bobby uses sensory strategies to have a successful experience.

"Unfortunately, not all children are able to access the book in written format which is when Brian kindly stepped in to record an audio version. He was an obvious first choice due to his relatable authentic Geordie accent and captivating gravelly voice and it’s amazing he was able to help us in this way."

Cheryl Gascoigne, Sensational Thinking Project Lead, with Bobby, children’s occupational therapy mascot.
Cheryl Gascoigne, Sensational Thinking Project Lead, with Bobby, children’s occupational therapy mascot. -Credit:NHS

'Bobby's Big Day Out' has already received feedback from families, with the book helping children to prepare to come into hospital, and providing them with a way of approaching the subject.

One parent said: "My child loves all the regional landmarks in the book and likes to show his friends that this is the hospital that he comes to."

Another added: "My daughter really likes Bobby and finds him so relatable; she also wears ear defenders. She brings her book with her to every appointment."

A third also said: "It will really help having the audio version of the book available online, my son is non verbal and often uses a tablet to listen to stories. It is fantastic it is being read in a regional accent."