The hunt for the best children’s book for the under 5s published last year is over.
The winner of Oscar’s Book Prize 2016 has been awarded to author-illustrator Gemma Merino for her book The Cow Who Climbed A Tree.
The power of the story of Tina the cow with its message of how you should follow your heart and your dreams, and the book's colourful illustrations won the judging panel over.
But the winning book faced stiff competition, with four very worthy runners up; The Fox and the Star by Coralie Bickford- Smith, Hector and Hummingbird by Nicholas John Frith, Sir Lilypad by Anna Kemp and Sara Ogilvie and The Lion Inside by Rachel Bright and Jim Field.
The £5,000 prize was awarded to Ms Merino by HRH Princess Beatrice, a judge of the prize, during a ceremony at the Institute of Directors on London’s Pall Mall, where Culture Minister Ed Vaizey also spoke.
In addition to HRH Princess Beatrice, this year's judging panel included Rebecca Nicolson, publisher and co-founder of Short Books, Nicky Dunne, chairman of Heywood Hill Books, Rupert Thomas, marketing director of Waitrose, and Oscar’s parents, Viveka Alvestrand and Evening Standard columnist James Ashton.
Oscar’s Book Prize was set up in 2013 in memory of Oscar Ashton who died from a heart condition at the age of three and a half.
The prize seeks to find the best under-5’s children’s book published in the UK that captures a child’s imagination. It is run in association with the Evening Standard and sponsored by Waitrose.