Monday, 21 March 2011

Bookfeast delivers a Prehistoric dollop of FUN!

Last Thursday, Lorenzo and I awoke at 5:30am and headed to Oxford for a full day of workshops. We had been invited to take part in a fantastic series of events hosted by Bookfeast, an organisation whose aim is to "give participants the opportunity to discover a passion for reading and creative writing that will stay with them for life."  Worthy stuff indeed, and they could not have selected two finer venues for their festival.

Our morning group was held with 70 children at the Pitt Rivers Museum. I've always been a fan of museums (I love ancient artifacts and historical oddities) but I'd never visited this award-winning building before. I was blown away. Anyone who imagines museums to be dusty old buildings needs to spend a day with their arm gripped in a T-Rex's angry maw. I'm all for interactive educational displays, but this might be taking things too far...

Both the Oxford Times and the Oxford Mail newspapers enjoyed our morning session (or did they just like the pic?) and you can read their coverage HERE and HERE. I'm even quoted! Fame at last!

After a delicious lunch at the museum we were escorted across town to the newly acquired/in-construction Story Museum, where a second lunch awaited. The remarkable team at the museum have an ambitious project on the go, as they are raising money to convert Rochester House, ex-GPO building, into a permanent centre "where children and adults can explore stories from many times and places and learn about their creators. This will combine innovative exhibitions, performances and a wide range of creative activities."

Another worthy initiative and - with a location that overlooks both the home in which Lewis Carroll wrote Alice in Wonderland and the street in which J.R.R Tolkien created some little known tale about Hobbits and lost jewelery - a phenomenal home for story telling.

Our afternoon was spent entertaining hundreds of eager readers, creating live drawings and original stories. Oh, and whoever thought The Land of Fudge would make a good setting for an adventure ... was right!
I love fudge.

Many thanks to all the staff of Pitt Rivers, the Story Museum and the Bookfeast crew for making the day such a success. We can't wait to return!