Record Start for Henley Literary Festival Schools Events

Rupert House pupils excited about Michael Morpurgo's festival visit

Rupert House pupils excited about Michael Morpurgo’s festival visit

Michael Morpurgo, Cressida Cowell, Christopher Lloyd and Marcia Williams feature in strongest schools line-up yet at the September 28-October 4 festival

Two-thirds of the tickets for schools events at this year’s Henley Literary Festival sold out in just 24 hours, a new record reflecting the biggest and best line-up yet, including Michael Morpurgo, Cressida Cowell and Marcia Williams.

As well as four schools from Henley, pupils and teachers will be travelling from Ascot, Goring, Maidenhead, Shiplake, Sonning Common, Twyford amongst others. Almost 1,000 tickets were taken up in the first day of release, nearly equalling last year’s final total. Three of the seven events – Warhorse author Michael Morpurgo, Grumbug creator Adam Stower and Christiane Dorion’s How The World Works workshop – sold out in the first day.

Alana Dickinson, head of English and History at Rupert House, commented: “Our pupils are always excited about meeting the writers and bombarding them with questions, and it is delightful to see the children reading and discussing the books with so much enjoyment. Haring writing tips and personal insights from favourite authors is so important to children as it helps to develop a real love of reading.”

Two sell-out speakers from the 2014 festival return this year: Christopher Lloyd and Marcia Williams. Lloyd – whose Magna Carta Chronicle was recently sent to every primary school in Britain – will cover almost 1,000 years of British history, while writer and illustrator Williams looks at the Tudors.

Cressidia Cowell will be appearing at the festival just weeks after the publication of the final book in the bestselling How To Train Your Dragon series, while Beano and Horrible Histories cartoonist Gary Northfield introduces his new Roman character Julius Zebra. Senior students will also be invited to relevant events from the adult programme, including Born Survivors author Wendy Holden with holocaust survivor Eva Clarke and Bonnie Greer on civil rights icon Rosa Parks.

A full programme of pre-school, post-school and weekend events for children of all ages will be announced next month, with Hugless Douglas creator David Melling already confirmed.