Revealing its best Family programme yet, The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival (6-15 October) is welcoming some very special guests in 2017. The line-up includes newcomers as well as well-established children’s authors, stars of Young Adult literature and big names from the realms of culture and entertainment.
Highlights include new Children’s Laureate Lauren Child in conversation with CBBC Controller Cheryl Taylor; award-winning actress and Queen of Comedy Miranda Hart; Great British Bake Off sensation Nadiya Hussain with her new festive family cookbook; Festival favourite Michael Morpurgo; best-selling author of Framed and Millions Frank Cottrell-Boyce, the mistress of mystery Robin Stevens; actor Adrian Edmondson, with his first children’s novel, the launch of YouTube superstar Ali-A’s first graphic novel and TV Burp’s Harry Hill with his hilarious new kids’ book.
Two much-loved children’s classics have major anniversaries this year: marking the 75th anniversary of Enid Blyton’s The Famous Five there’s a special theatre event and free story trail. Celebrating 30 years of Where’s Wally?, take part in the Where’s Wally? Trail around Cheltenham’s town centre featuring scenes created by local primary schools.
Two brand-new free children’s spaces will be unveiled this year:
The Den will be filled with free book-related activities for families on Saturdays and Sundays, from helping Maisy Mouse creator Lucy Cousins create a mural to Harry Potter potions and learning to draw animal surprises.
In The Woodland Trust Wild Wood families can settle down in the picnic area while youngsters build a den, dress up, follow The Famous Five story trail, listen to storytellers and meet their favourite book characters.
For the little ones, Kes Gray and Jim Field (Oi! Cat),Rachel Bright (The Koala Who Could) and Kristina Stephenson (Sir Charlie Stinky Socks) bring their stories to life. Meet Hip and Hop, the characters in the new book by MOBO award-winning rapper and poet Akala and illustrator Sav Akyüz.
Big names and rising stars from the YA world at this year’s Festival are Melinda Salisbury, Patrice Lawrence, Michael Grant and Gemma Cairney.
Where to Eat
A full list of food traders who will be on site in Montpellier Gardens during the Festival will be available on www.cheltenhamfestivals.com from 1 September.
Additionally, there are plenty of family friendly-places to eat in the surrounding areas, http://cheltenhamrocks.co.uk/12-baby-and-toddler-friendly-cafes-in-cheltenham/
Where to Park
There are car parks a short walk away from the Festival site, view full list here. Additionally, the Arle Court Park and Ride facility drops off close to the Festival site (Park and Ride open Mon-Sat 6:30am – 7:30pm).
Facilities at the Festival
The Festival’s Montpellier Gardens site is in the centre of town where everything is to hand including on-site toilets, playground and picnic area and a good selection of shops nearby.
The full Festival line-up is at www.cheltenhamfestivals.com Booking for Cheltenham Literature Festival opens to Members at 1pm on Wednesday 30 August and to the general public at 1pm on Wednesday 6 September.
Notes to editors:
Press contact: Bairbre.firstname.lastname@example.org
• Press and speaker images are here
• The link to the Main programme is here
• The link to the Family programme is here
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• For more information about Cheltenham and the surrounding area, including details of local hotels and restaurants, visit www.visitcheltenham.com