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The Queen’s Birthday Book

Many things have happened in 2016, but looking at the brighter side of this year we would like to remember Her Majesty The Queen Elizabeth’s 90th Birthday.

The Queens’ Birthday Book was one of our biggest projects of 2016. Starting at the beginning of the year, we pulled out all the stops in order to create this Online Book as a surprise. Everyone & anyone had the opportunity to write a personal message to the Queen. Celebrities such as Alan Titchmarsh, Simon Pegg, Lorraine Kelly & Jamie Oliver have put their own messages of appreciation in the book. For a full list of celebrities & stars who signed The Queen’s Birthday Book, click here.

Lots of people sent heartfelt messages, poems and photographs of themselves, their family and their moments with The Queen. John Deere shared his moment with The Queen with a fantastic photograph of them both standing by the John Deere Limited Stand at the Royal Smithfield Show in London in the 70s which he accompanied with a warm message.

The 21st of April 2016 marked the official date of The Queen’s 90th birthday! On the day itself, The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh undertook a walkabout in Windsor and then walked from the Henry VIII Gate of Windsor Castle to the Statue of Queen Victoria. There she unveiled the plaque marking The Queen’s Walkway.

The Queen’s Birthday Book was such a success! It had thousands of heart-felt good wishes from 111 countries around the world! Even though months have passed since the online book’s official release, many people still come back to view and comment upon it.

The Queen’s Birthday Book is definitely a large feather in our caps and you can view the little piece of British history here.

If you would like to raise awareness, increase engagement and funds for your charity or project or simply honour a loved one, contact us to find out how we can create an online book for you.


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Katherine GeorgeThe Queen’s Birthday Book

The Twelve Days of Christmas

As we near one of the most exciting times of the year that is Christmas, our minds turn to festivities such as presents, mince pies and Christmas carols, like the famous ’12 days of Christmas’ song we all know. Usually, countdowns, lead to the big day, however, the ’12 days of Christmas’ actually begins on Christmas day and end on January 5th. But what are the true meanings of each day and that partridge in a pear tree?

On the first day of Christmas my true love sent to me, A Partridge in a Pear Tree… But did you know… The Partridge is said to symbolically represent Jesus Christ, this is because that bird is selflessly willing to sacrifice its life to protect its young by feigning injury to draw away predators.

On the second day of Christmas my true love sent to me, Two Turtle Doves… these two turtle doves are actually the Old and New Testaments.

On the third day of Christmas my true love sent to me, Three French Hens… these three lovely French Hens stand for faith, hope, and love.

On the fourth day of Christmas my true love sent to me, Four Calling Birds… but who know these ‘calling birds’ were actually symbolizing Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.

On the fifth day of Christmas my true love sent to me, Five Gold Rings… which represent the first five treasured books of the Old Testament

On the sixth day of Christmas my true love sent to me, Six Geese A-laying… this simply stood for the six days of creation.   

On the seventh day of Christmas my true love sent to me, Seven Swans A-swimming… these represent Prophesy, Serving, Teaching, Exhortation, Contribution, Leadership, and Mercy, the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

On the eighth day of Christmas my true love sent to me, Eight Maids A-milking… these are the eight beatitudes, blessed are the poor in spirit, those who mourn, the meek, those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, the merciful, the pure in heart, the peacemakers, those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake.

On the ninth day of Christmas my true love sent to me, Nine Ladies Dancing… these ladies actually represent the nine fruit of the Holy Spirit, including love, joy, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

On the tenth day of Christmas my true love sent to me, Ten Lords A-leaping… and these lords represent the ten commandments, that we know today.

On the eleventh day of Christmas my true love sent to me, Eleven Pipers Piping who represent the eleven faithful apostles, Simon Peter, Andrew, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James bar Alphaeus, Simon the Zealot, Judas bar James. There is also the twelfth disciple, Judas Iscariot who famously betrayed Jesus.

On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love sent to me, Twelve Drummers Drumming… who symbolize the twelve points of belief in the ‘Apostles creed’.

We at the Online Book Company, wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

All Twelve days of Christmas

All Twelve days of Christmas



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Polly BolithoThe Twelve Days of Christmas

Christmas Traditions from Around the World

The countdown begins to Christmas! In the United Kingdom, the tinsel is being strung around the house, thick festive jumpers are being worn and warm mulled wine is being drunk. But what about the rest of the world? How do other countries celebrate Christmas?

In the United Kingdom, most British families celebrate Christmas together on the 25th of December – often to have a traditional Christmas lunch after having opened their presents in front of each other. However, Christmas is celebrated in the Netherlands on the 5th of December and for Russia and Ukraine, Christmas is celebrated on the 7th of January! Its also very common to see a Christmas tree in a British household, which was first popularized by Prince Albert. Prince Albert has german origins and he missed his own Christmas traditions, hence why he brought the Christmas tree to the British public. Whereas in India, people decorate mango and banana trees instead of fir trees, due to the hot climate, and Ukrainians decorate their trees with spider webs due to an old legend where a spider turned their webs into gold and silver for a poor family.

Christmas isn’t just about the day itself – it is about the weeks leading up to it. The United Kingdom usually preps for Christmas by carol singing, festive markets, and Christmas fairy lights. On the 5th of December, German children leave shoes outside the house to be filled with sweets overnight. In Czech republic, single women, on Christmas Eve, will turn their backs to the house and throw a shoe over their shoulder to see whether they will find love or not next year. In Norway on Christmas Eve, there is the strict rule of no cleaning – all brooms are kept locked away in case they are stolen by witches. Finally, Japanese usually tuck into a bucket of KFC on Christmas eve due to a widespread ad campaign for the deep-fried fast-food in 1974.

British families will often eat turkey on Christmas day, accompanied by cranberry sauce, brussel sprouts and pigs-in-blankets and then finished off with a mince pie and some Christmas pudding. In South Africa, the Christmas delicacy is a deep-fried caterpillar of the Emperor Moth! Less unusual Christmas dishes are Romania’s Ciorba de perisoara, a delicious vegetable broth with meatballs and another is Spanish turkey stuffed with truffles, often served with chorizo and mushrooms. For dessert on Christmas, Swedes will often eat a festive rice pudding that has an almond hidden in it – whoever finds it will supposedly be married within a year. Other Christmassy desserts are Philippine’s moist rice-coconut-cheese cake, German Stollen fruit cake and Austrian’s chocolate sponge with apricot jam – delicious!

We at the Online Book Company, wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.


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Polly BolithoChristmas Traditions from Around the World


Gentlemen, this December, it’s time to ‘ditch your razor and grow a beard’, but why you may ask? It is of course for ‘Decembeard’, a fundraising campaign, which exists to raise awareness and funds for those affected by bowel cancer. So it’s time to turn your Movember moustache into a beard for Decembeard.

Did you know, someone dies from bowel cancer every half an hour, and every 15 minutes someone is diagnosed? Affecting both men and women, bowel cancer is the third most common cause of death in the world. If this disease is caught early enough it can be treated with success, it is for this reason why it is so important to raise awareness, it could save lives.

Decembeard has been running successfully for over five years, with thousands of men getting involved to show their support with their beards.

‘Our Big Hairy Audacious Goal’ is to never give up until no one dies of bowel cancer and all those diagnosed get the support they need. –

Not only are men growing their beards for this good cause, but those who already have one can spread joy and Christmas spirit through the use of glitter, they can get their friends to sponsor their glittery beard, as well as, other fundraising options. Whatever you decide to do, everyone is prompted to share their beard fundraising experience via social media to create more of an impact.

The way the Decembeard fundraising campaign gets men together to do their bit for a good cause is truly incredible. If you would like to raise awareness, increase engagement and funds for your charity or project or simply honour a loved one, contact us to find out how we can create an online book for you.


Photo credit to

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Polly BolithoDecembeard

Laughter Africa

“They don’t give up, they carry on living with strength and courage. They are not victims, they are survivors.”

Since starting on 25th June 2015, Laughter Africa has successfully worked with over one hundred children living in harsh conditions on the streets of Sierra Leone. An astounding 85% of those children are still at home, some of which have been on the streets for up to 9 years, which is truly incredible.

There are many challenges for children living on the streets, from discrimination and violence all the way to the saddest circumstance of death. Laughter Africa works in three main ways; firstly through their Outreach work, which involves meeting children living on the streets and building mutual trust, these children will often need food, medical care and someone to talk to. Secondly, their Interim Care Centre will provide, food, clothing, healthcare, counselling, support and a safe place for the children to live while Laughter Africa attempts to find their family. Activities such as football are also used to strengthen trust, in order to get closer to the goal of helping children break free from the street life. Lastly Their home tracing, family reunification and home visits mean that the children will be reunited with their families providing the situation is safe and secure. If this is not the case, an alternative long-term home will be found. Whatever the children need, Laughter Africa is there to provide.

The support that Laughter Africa provides is truly inspirational, and we are very proud to work with them on their online book that is full of inspirational stories and experiences from all of those who are or have been part of Laughter Africa. We would like to wish Laughter Africa good luck in the future with this fantastic project

“I just want to say a massive thank you to the online book company and all their amazing staff. They believed in me and Laughter Africa when Laughter was just a dream. They have been there every step of the way since February 2014 and have just been so supportive. I really do appreciate them and I can’t thank them enough.”  –  James, founder of Laughter Africa

If you would like to raise awareness, increase engagement and funds for your charity or project or simply honour a loved one, contact us to find out how we can create an online book for you.


Photo Credit: Laughter Africa

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Polly BolithoLaughter Africa

Children in Need

Tomorrow night, on the 18th November at 7pm, marks the start of the BBC Children in Need Annual Telethon. It is one of the three biggest British Telethons; the others being Big Red Nose Day and Sports Relief. Children in Need is an annual fundraiser event conducted to help raise funds for charities who focus on helping young, vulnerable and disabled people. Children In Need is currently supporting 2,400 projects and since 1980 has successfully raised over £840 million pounds for disabled children in the United Kingdom.

One of the most iconic and recognisable symbols of Children in Need is the bright yellow, eye patch wearing Pudsey Bear, who is known to be quite the character. Pudsey was first introduced in 1985, when he was a small brown cuddly mascot. He was designed by BBC graphic designer, Joanna Ball, and she named him after the West Yorkshire Town in which she was born in. Pudsey has had several transformations over the years, but has remained the same since 2008.

This year’s Children in Need is both a special and a sad one as we remember long-running and much-loved presenter, Sir Terry Wogan who died earlier this year in January. Celebrities and presenters are using this year’s Children in Need event to commemorate his memory.

We have been lucky enough to work with several charities and on their memorial books and we understand the importance of keeping people’s memories alive. If you would like to raise awareness, increase engagement and funds for your charity or project or simply honour a loved one, contact us to find out how we can create an online book for you.



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Polly BolithoChildren in Need

Remembrance Day

“We shall not sleep, though poppies grow in Flanders fields.” – John McCrae.

The 11th of November marks the end of the first World War and is the official day of remembrance. Remembrance Day is when the British population come together to remember and honour those we lost in the fight to secure and protect Great Britain’s freedom.

Remembrance ceremonies are held at over 100,000 war memorials across Britain. The most notable ceremony is that which is held at the Cenotaph in Whitehall on the Sunday closest to the 11th of November: The National Service of Remembrance.

Britain has several traditions in regards to Remembrance Day – the two most common being the 2 minute silence and the wearing of a red poppy.

The symbolism surrounding the poppy originated from Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae’s famous  1915 war poem “In Flanders Field”. The popularity of the poem and its reference to the iconic flower created the pathway of using poppies as a way to raise money and awareness for our wartime veterans. Poppies were worn for the first time at the 1921 anniversary ceremony and they were in fact real poppies.

Poppies are still used today but now they aren’t solely used to commemorate the heroes of the World Wars. Remembrance day has evolved to remember all those who have served Britain – since 1945 some 3,500 servicemen and women have been killed or injured fighting for our country.

We are honoured to have been given numerous opportunities to create online books in memory of those who have dedicated their lives for us, the British public. Online memorial books such as the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund, Royal Army Medical Corps and The RAF Association are projects we consider close to our heart and we will be thinking of those who have been honoured within those books this Remembrance day.

If you would like to raise awareness, increase engagement and funds for your charity or project or simply honour loved ones, contact us to find out how we can create an online book for you.


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Polly BolithoRemembrance Day

St Catherine’s Church

“We are ordinary people wishing to create a parish where all feel welcomed and valued.” – Parish of St. Catherine of Alexandria.

St Catherine’s Church is a Roman Catholic church situated on Meath Street, Dublin. It was devoted to St. Catherine of Alexandria whose feast day was known as a day of holy obligation up until the 16th century.  The church and parish is currently under the administration of the Augustinian Orede and has been since 1974.

An unfortunate event happened in January 2012, where the church took an extensive amount of fire damage which caused over 5 million euros worth of destruction to the interior.

The church is currently under restoration thanks to the generous amount of donations from groups and individuals. Though the church is still under reconstruction, the kind hearts of those who donated have meant that St Catherine’s can be opened to the public and that services can still continue.

We enjoyed working with Anne from St Catherine’s Church to create an Online Book to honour and recognise those individuals who made the restoration possible through donations. The online book is able to be viewed in a touch screen cabinet at the church.

If you would like to raise awareness, increase engagement and funds for your charity or project or simply honour loved ones contact us to find out how we can create an online book for you.

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Polly BolithoSt Catherine’s Church


It is that time of year again! Bulk buying fun-sized sweets, carving spooky faces on pumpkins and adding fake blood to your vampire costume –  the traditional Halloween activities.

However, this Halloween, a four-legged member of the family is joining in on the festive fun!

This year, Dogs Unite are holding a Halloween Howl – a sponsored dog walk to raise funds and awareness for Guide Dogs. Our furry best friends around the country will be dressing up and heading out on Halloween to show off their costumes for their hard working brethren at Guide Dogs.

Those who have registered with Dog Unite even get their own Nutritional Supplement Pack – so it won’t only be the kids getting something tasting during Trick or Treat!

All over the United Kingdom, dog-lovers are setting up an array of fundraising ideas such as ‘Pet the Pooch’, photo shoots, dog washes, dog shows and even ‘Bark Boxes’ where everyone can drop in a pound into the box whenever a dog barks. Some amazing ideas to raise money for such a wonderful cause.

The challenge is to raise £35, which could pay to support a working guide dog partnership for a week. For a more detailed guide to what the money could go towards, check out Guide Dogs Shopping List.

We are in complete awe of how everyone is stepping up for such a good cause, this Halloween. We love the Guide Dogs charity and we love to see people striving to help their cause. We have been lucky enough to work with Guide Dogs ourselves and have created an online book for them in dedication to those who have left donations in their will to Guide Dogs. This is a book where family members of the donators can create celebration pages and messages to remember the lives of the loved ones.

If you would like to raise awareness, increase engagement and funds for your charity or project or simply honour loved ones contact us to find out how we can create an online book for you.



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Polly BolithoHowl-oween!

The Battle of Waterloo – Private Samuel Ackroyd

Over a year ago, the Waterloo 200 Project was born in recognition of the bicentenary of the Battle of Waterloo. This inspirational project commemorates and raises awareness of what this historic event left behind by exploring stories behind the iconic, epic battle.

We are so proud to be a part of this fantastic project by creating an online book in celebration of the 200 year anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo. With the acknowledgment of all 36,000 British soldiers involved, the online book allows descendants to share information and photographs of cherished memorabilia that belonged to their special ancestor. A collection of information and memories like these will become a forever lasting record for future generations to come.

The online book has received many lovely and inspirational tributes, one of the first to be made was to Private Samuel Ackroyd, who was born on 22nd April 1774 in Yorkshire and grew up to be a farmer. In 1799 he was enlisted in the 31st Regiment of Food Guards with the rank of Sergeant, which led to three years learning as a Commissioned Officer with his first Regiment. Samuel continued his journey, when he was recruited at Hyde Park into 2nd Life Guards, with the rank of Private. After he married and had children, Private Samuel Ackroyd fought at the Battle of Waterloo on 18th June 1815. Read the full tribute of Private Samuel Ackroyd here. 

Private Samuel Ackroyd’s courageous effort in the Battle of Waterloo was rewarded with a Waterloo medal, that was still in the family in the 1990s. Though a photograph of the medal exists and is in the hands of the family, all trace has sadly been lost on the medal. If anyone has any information on where Private Samuel Ackroyd’s medal may have ended up, we would be incredibly grateful for you to contact us, as we would love to piece together the rest of the story.

If you would like to raise awareness, increase engagement for your charity or project, or honour a loved one, contact us to find out how we can create a bespoke online book for you.


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Polly BolithoThe Battle of Waterloo – Private Samuel Ackroyd