The great Jacqueline Wilson, the most-borrowed children’s author from libraries, reveals the inspiration behind her latest book, Rent a Bridesmaid. She discusses her inspiration and love of books with the HAYDAYS Director.
In this interactive and family-friendly event, you will travel through a year at Hogwarts with Fleurble Laffalot. Discover fun facts about the first Harry Potter books as well taking part in some of the key elements of life at Hogwarts – the sorting ceremony, Quidditch, potions and transfiguration classes.
Join Jacqueline Wilson as she introduces her new book, set in the Second World War. She will also discuss how she started her writing career and created some of her best-loved characters including Tracy Beaker and Hetty Feather.
There will be no book signing after this event but printed bookplates with Jacqueline’s signature will be available with every book bought in the Festival Bookshop.
Did you know that there are 29 bones in your head including six tiny ear bones that help you hear? From the structure of the skeleton to the importance of the respiratory system, Professor Robert Winston explains the working of every part of the human body – the most complex machine on Earth.
Ever thought life was hard? Sir Tony Robinson goes back in time to when being a child was no excuse for idleness, bringing alive the stinking, back-breaking jobs that children did as jigger-turners, turnip-pickers, matchbox-makers and more.
The comedian/entertainer/writer and award-winning illustrator introduce you to their latest book, a brand new adventure about a family of hyenas living in an ordinary suburban street. An unmissable event packed with wildly hilarious readings in Julian’s unique style, together with live drawing from David.
Join the author/illustrator for a fantastic show filled with stories, games, music and live doodling inspired by suggestions from the audience. Pichon will introduce the new Tom Gates adventure: Tom’s teacher Mr Fullerman has set a class assignment: a family tree! Tom's ready to learn all about the Gates family, his friends and a furry creature (or two!). Bring a pencil and paper.
The writer’s new novel has immigration at its heart. It is the story of Joe’s struggle to save the family-run café in Bryn Mawr that was started before the war by his Italian great-great grandfather. He vows to keep it open, and find out more about his past at the same time, as well as trying to bring a diverse town together through good food and fine times.
This writer tells ancient folktales with the wit of a stand-up and the turn of phrase of a poet. Come and be enthralled as he launches his latest collection. Expect secrets, riddles, mysterious strangers, awful jokes and beautiful lies.
Join the acclaimed actress and anthologist for a sizzling reading of some of the joyous, magical and humorous poems from her anthology. In a dazzling display of poetry, the show journeys through a calendar year, with poems celebrating events such as Martin Luther King Day and the first day of Spring before ending with Michael Rosen’s The Car Trip.
Sir Tony Robinson and Beatie Edney of Poldark will be performing alongside Allie Esiri.
Chris Riddell will be live drawing the event. Tony Robinson and Beatie Edney will be performing poems.
Alex Rider is back. Join the author as he reveals what’s in store in the next chapter of his legendary character’s life as he is forced to leave his home in San Francisco and head back east. There are some old friends and old enemies and, above all, there is plenty of action, adrenaline and adventure.
The brilliant Ross and Christopher explore the wonder of science as a way to explain some of the mysteries of the world in their books, Time Travelling with a Hamster and The Many Worlds of Albie Bright.
The author was terrified of beetles until she started to write Beetle Boy, when she discovered that they support the eco-system of the whole planet. As a result, she created Baxter the rhinoceros beetle, side-kick to Darkus, who needs all the help he can get to find his missing father, in this funny and heart-warming story. Dr Sarah Beynon is an expert entomologist and head of Beynon's Bug Farm, with some very cool beetles.
The Festival favourite author/illustrator returns to talk about How to Train Your Dragon, and give the Hay audience a sneak peek of her first new project in 18 years. Fantasy, magical adventure The Wizards of Once will be published in September. Cressida will read an exclusive extract and show illustrations. The ‘world-conquering’ How to Train Your Dragon (also a film and TV series) has sold eight million copies worldwide and is on Hay’s list of 30 books for 30 years. Unmissable!
Join the acclaimed historian as she vividly tells the story of the childhood of Queen Victoria, growing up hidden from public view. There will be stories, facts, and even the chance to become part of history by joining in a living timeline complete with props.
Wolves are the stuff of children’s fiction. Join award-winning illustrator William Grill and author Katherine Rundell as they discuss their respective books and the enduring fictional appeal of wolves. The Wolves of Currumpaw is the winner of the 2017 Bolognaragazzi Non-Fiction Award. Chaired by Jonathan Douglas, director of National Literacy Trust
You’re a Bad Man, Mr Gum has become a modern classic – pretty good at only 10 years old. But, as the winner of two Roald Dahl Funny Book Prizes, two Blue Peter Book Awards and the Red House Book Award, this was always something special. Celebrate Mr Gum with the author in an event that is likely to be as riotous as the book.
Step back in time and explore the amazing lost cities of Thonis-Heracleion and Canopus with the help of Xanthe Gresham Knight, one of the core Storytellers for the British Museum. Enjoy incredible tales of submerged deities and treasures and discover how these fantastic cities were rediscovered.
Join Julia Donaldson discussing the creation of The Giant Jumperee. Chaired by Children’s Director Julia Eccleshare.
Ever wondered how robots work, what they do and why we even have them? Join the Science Museum as they take you on an amazing interactive journey into the world of robots. Discover how we program them, how they’re engineered and which is better – robot technology or human biology. This exciting and engaging science show features incredible live robot demonstrations and experiments that will blow your circuits.
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.
Terrifying Tudor? No. Rotten Roman? No. It’s Martin Brown – the ever-popular illustrator of Horrible Histories. In Martin’s action-packed show full of jokes, drawing and fantastic facts, he will reveal secrets about illustrating the bestselling series and show why everyone can draw. With tons of activity and audience suggestions, all the family will enjoy this Horrible show.
Join the stand-up comedian and presenter of BBC Radio 4's The Infinite Monkey Cage, and the author of The Many Worlds of Albie Bright, as they tackle questions of science and creativity, puzzling over mysteries such as black holes, the Big Bang and the nature of reality as explored in their books The Infinite Lives of Maisie Day and How to Build a Universe Part I.
Horatio Clare weaves a spell-binding story of a rambunctious boy, some remarkable animals, a lot of jokes and a darkly evil magic that Aubrey must bravely defeat if he is to save his father. Peter Florence says, “This is destined to become a children’s classic”.