Introduction to children and young people’s events
There is lots to delight and inspire on the young people’s programme of the FT Weekend Oxford Literary Festival 2014 with events for everyone from tots to teens, and some of the very best children’s authors of today.
We are proud to be welcoming both the current Children’s Laureate, Malorie Blackman, pictured left, as a special guest, and former Children’s Laureate and War Horse author Michael Morpurgo. Malorie Blackman will be discussing her Noughts and Crosses series with Chancellor of Oxford Brookes University and director of Liberty Shami Chakrabarti. Michael is bringing his specially devised musical adaptation of The Mozart Question to the festival.
Other award-winning authors include Chris Riddell, whose book Goth Girl and the Ghost of a Mouse won this year’s Costa Children’s Book Award; Carnegie Medal winners David Almond and Meg Rosoff; and Roald Dahl Funny Prize winner Liz Pichon. Guaranteed to have children laughing in the aisles is Horrible Histories illustrator Martin Brown, and the genius team behind Oliver and the Seawings, Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre. For wildlife lovers, Lauren St John joins Virginia McKenna, founder of the Born Free Foundation, to tell amazing animal stories. Lauren Child, creator of the Charlie and Lola books and new Ruby Redfort adventures will bring another touch of style and glamour. Teenagers should definitely get out of bed to hear Cherub author Robert Muchamore and Missing author Sophie McKenzie go head to head on thriller writing.
In the year that Charlie and the Chocolate Factory turns 50, we are celebrating Roald Dahl with a splendiferous event for fans, including songs from the hit show Matilda and some very special guests. There’s a treat for fans of Enid Blyton too, as Kate Edwards and Alison Gwynn from Seven Stories, National Centre for Children’s Books explore the Enid Blyton phenomenon and what her stories mean to children today.
For the very youngest we have a Winnie the Pooh picnic with stories, songs and honey sandwiches and a special party with Dick Bruna’s Miffy with stories, craft, goody bags and fun.
Finally, there’s a comic-making workshop from Oxford’s own The Phoenix Comic, and even a surprise appearance from Merlin (thanks to author Kevin Crossley-Holland and the Story Museum). There really is something for everyone.
Director of young people’s programme