Hay Festival HAYDAYS for families and children

Welcome to the Haydays programme, we have lots of events for children and families to enjoy together, including more workshops than ever before. Children aged 11 or older may attend events or workshops on their own. Children aged 10 or younger must be accompanied by an adult (aged 16 or older) at all times, including during events. Adults will need to buy a ticket for children's events, unless otherwise stated. Babes in arms do not require tickets. We look forward to seeing you all at the festival.

Event W116

Rooted Forest School

Craft and Fire Workshop

Venue: Wild Garden

Come to this family and children's nature adventure session run by Rooted Forest School in the Hay Festival Wild Garden. Join in a range of outdoor, Forest School-inspired activities including nature games, natural crafts and making, fire skills, foraging and cooking.

(parents must attend but do not require a ticket)

6-8 years
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Rooted Forest School

Event W113

Splatch

Circus Workshops

Venue: Cube

Roll up, roll up...run away with the circus at Hay Festival. Join two fantastic performers from Splatch, a community-driven company from Cardiff. They will be teaching hula hoop, juggling, tightwire and acrobatics. Get physical and have fun at this workshop.

11-14 years
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Event W114

Tobias Hickey and Stephen Fowler

University of Worcester Illustration Workshop

Venue: Scribblers Hut

Join the illustrators in a printmaking workshop and have a go at creating characters through rubber and foam stamping techniques.

(parents may attend but do not require a ticket)

9-11 years
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Tobias Hickey and Stephen Fowler

Event HD83

Peter Lord

Venue: Baillie Gifford Stage

The Creative Director and co-founder of Aardman Animations takes us behind the scenes of the UK's favourite animation studio. The latest blockbuster adventure is Early Man.

Family
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Event HD84

Steven Camden

Nobody Real

Venue: Starlight Stage

One of the UK’s most acclaimed spoken-word artists who has performed around the world introduces his new book about a girl called Marcie and her imaginary friend, Thor Baker. Join this discussion and creative session revolving around imaginary friends and the role they play in our lives.

12+
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Event W117

Rosie Wellesley

The Drawing Doctor and the Itchy-saurus

Venue: Scribblers Hut

Rosie is a doctor who also makes gorgeous picture-books. She’ll be reading from her new book and talking about why she wrote this story about a dinosaur with an itch that can’t be scratched. You’ll be joining in with the dinosaur roars and potion-making and then drawing along with Rosie as she shows you how to draw characters this and her other new book The Very Helpful Hedgehog. You’ll also make your own dinosaur roar speech bubbles to take away.

(parents must attend but do not require a ticket)

3 - 5 years
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Event W118

Rooted Forest School

Craft and Fire Workshop

Venue: Wild Garden

Come to this family and children's nature adventure session run by Rooted Forest School in the Hay Festival Wild Garden. Join in a range of outdoor, Forest School-inspired activities including nature games, natural crafts and making, fire skills, foraging and cooking.

(parents may attend but do not require a ticket)

9 - 11 years
This event has taken place
Rooted Forest School

Event HD85

Amy Lamé in conversation with Jenny Valentine

Venue: Starlight Stage

Join the author, activist, BBC Radio 6 Music presenter and the Mayor of London’s very first Night Tsar as she looks back at the rise and achievements of the LGBTQ+ movement. With the help of her new book, From Prejudice to Pride, Amy charts LGBTQ+ history from ancient civilisations to the present day, exploring the pioneers, heartbreaks and courageous communities that have helped us understand what it means to be LGBTQ+ today.

11+
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Event HD86

Emma Carroll, Kiran Millwood Hargrave, Jacob Sager Weinstein

Imaginary worlds

Venue: Llwyfan Cymru – Wales Stage

How do you create a world where everything is different to our own? Join three authors as they discuss the imaginative journey it takes to create alternative worlds in their books including Skychasers, The Girl of Ink and Stars and The City of Secret Rivers. Chaired by Emily Drabble, BookTrust

9+
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Event W120

Feral Productions

Follow Me: A Wellbeing Live Literature Performance

Venue: Mess Tent

Audiences are immersed in an exquisite story while performers enhance the experience through smell, taste and touch. Feral places you at the centre of a magical soundscape, taking you on a dreamlike journey that is unforgettable. This multisensory production fuses the Danish Ole Lukkoye tale with gentler elements of Hoffman’s Sandman story.

Family (children 10+)
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Event W119

Rosie Wellesley

The Drawing Doctor and the Itchy-saurus

Venue: Scribblers Hut

Rosie is a doctor who also makes gorgeous picture-books. She’ll be reading from her new book and talking about why she wrote this story about a dinosaur with an itch that can’t be scratched. You’ll be joining in with the dinosaur roars and potion-making in the story and then drawing along with Rosie as she shows you how to create characters using a printing technique created specifically for the book.

(parents must attend but do not require a ticket)

6 - 8 years
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Event W121

Splatch

Circus Workshops

Venue: Cube

Roll up, roll up...run away with the circus at Hay Festival. Join two fantastic performers from Splatch, a community-driven company from Cardiff. They will be teaching hula hoop, juggling, tightwire and acrobatics. Get physical and have fun at this workshop.

15 - 18 years
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Event W122

Rooted Forest School

Fire and Cooking Workshop

Venue: Wild Garden

Come to this family and children's nature adventure session run by Rooted Forest School in the Hay Festival Wild Garden. Join in a range of outdoor, Forest School-inspired activities including nature games, natural crafts and making, fire skills, foraging and cooking.

(parents must attend but do not require a ticket)

4 - 6 years
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Rooted Forest School

Event HD87

Lucy Worsley

Lady Mary

Venue: Oxfam Moot

Join the historian for the dramatic and captivating story of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon’s divorce, told through the eyes of their daughter, Lady Mary. Expect costumes, trivia and tips on how to get a princess out of jail.

9+
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Event HD88

Miranda McKearney, Nicola Davies, Atinuke

Building Empathy Through Stories

Venue: Starlight Stage

The founder of EmpathyLab, a new organisation inspired by scientific research showing that reading builds our real-life empathy, discusses how to create stories that elicit empathy in readers with the two writers. There will be an opportunity to join in empathy-boosting activities, and look ahead to national Empathy Day on 12 June.

6+
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Event W125

Feral Productions

Follow Me: A Wellbeing Live Literature Performance

Venue: Mess Tent

Audiences are immersed in an exquisite story while performers enhance the experience through smell, taste and touch. Feral places you at the centre of a magical soundscape, taking you on a dreamlike journey that is unforgettable. This multisensory production fuses the Danish Ole Lukkoye tale with gentler elements of Hoffman’s Sandman story.

Family (children 10+)
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Event HD89

Atinuke

Baby Goes to Market

Venue: Starlight Stage

Join spectacular storyteller Atinuke for a bouncy read-along with Baby and his mama. Hear all about the traditional folk tales and the stories from the bustling city in Nigeria where she grew up and which inspired her writing.

3+
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Event W131

Textiles Workshop

Led by students and staff from the Textile Design Degree Course at Hereford College of Arts

Venue: Scribblers Hut

These workshops will explore textiles in fresh and unexpected ways by linking contemporary practices and technology with age-old techniques. By focusing on storytelling, heritage and a respect for craft that is also sustainable, participants will experiment with natural dyes, create three-dimensional lines and threads and practise slow stitch techniques. Materials are supplied and will be sourced from outlets promoting re-use and recycling, to reduce materials going into the waste stream.

14 - 16 years
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Event HD90

Chelsea Clinton talks to Alex Jones

She Persisted Around the World: 13 Women Who Changed History

Venue: Oxfam Moot

Come and be inspired by some great heroes. Clinton’s new picture book, with illustrations by Alexandra Boiger, celebrates 13 women from around the world who have used their voices and determination to create change and to shape history. The women whose stories she tells include: Marie Curie, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz, Leymah Gbowee, Caroline Herschel, Wangari Maathai, Aisha Rateb, J.K. Rowling, Yuan Yuan Tan and Malala Yousafzai.  

4-8
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Chelsea Clinton talks to Alex Jones

Event HD91

Greg James and Chris Smith

Kid Normal

Venue: Llwyfan Cymru – Wales Stage

Calling all heroes, villains and Super Zeroes. Join the radio personalities and authors for an action-packed Kid Normal event, including a reading from the new book, Kid Normal and the Rogue Heroes. Dave Cribb will provide musical accompaniment throughout. Help create a brand new superhero story and prepare for lots of games, singing and audience participation. Superpowers not required.

7+
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Event W132

Textiles Workshop

Led by students and staff from the Textile Design Degree Course at Hereford College of Arts

Venue: Scribblers Hut

These workshops will explore textiles in fresh and unexpected ways by linking contemporary practices and technology with age-old techniques. By focusing on storytelling, heritage and a respect for craft that is also sustainable, participants will experiment with natural dyes, create three-dimensional lines and threads and practise slow stitch techniques. Materials are supplied and will be sourced from outlets promoting re-use and recycling, to reduce materials going into the waste stream.

16 - 18 years
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Event HD92

Allie Esiri

A Poem for Every Day of the Year

Venue: Llwyfan Cymru – Wales Stage

The poetry curator's latest anthology is a journey through a calendar year, highlighting key moments and dates with a poem for every day, by writers including Wordsworth, Lewis Carroll, Maya Angelou and Emily Dickinson. Join Allie and a host of actors including Tobias Menzies (The History BoysGame of Thrones, starring as Prince Philip in The Crown season three and four), Ophelia Lovibond, Tony Robinson, Toby Jones and Gina Bellman (star of Coupling, currently streaming to a new generation of fans on Netflix, and Ophelia in Peter Hall’s Hamlet opposite Stephen Dillane) in a highly entertaining hour as they perform their favourite poems from the book, a humorous journey through history and human experience.

9 - Adult
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Allie Esiri

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