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Wealden Literary Festival Announces Children's Activities for 2017

30th May 2017

The organisers of the family-friendly Wealden Literary Festival have today announced details of their fun-filled children’s events and nature activities.

This enchanting festival will take place in the glorious gardens of Boldshaves, Woodchurch, nr Tenterden on the weekend of 15 and 16 July 2017.

Yuval Zommer, genius author/illustrator of The Big Book of Beasts (ages 8 to 12), and Naomi Howarth, whose latest book is the beautiful Tug of War (ages 4 to 8+), will be combining readings from their books with interactive art sessions. Lucy Strange will be exploring her spell-binding book, The Secret of Nightingale Wood (ages 9+).

We are also thrilled to have Beanstalk at the festival for the first time.  Beanstalk are a national charity whose trained helpers will be giving one-to-one reading support as well as storytelling sessions.

For the intrepid, Badger Bushcraft will be on hand in the woods throughout the weekend to lead all manner of outdoor adventures, from den-building to woodland crafts and cooking.  Meanwhile, Wondrous Adventures, experts in the way of all things faerie, will be sparking imaginations with an array of woodland fairy adventures.

On top of all this, there are nature trails, wildlife safaris, foraging courses and art and crafts workshops.

There is also a packed programme of adult events including the opportunity to see award-winning writer and co-presenter of the BBC’s Coast series, Nicholas Crane and Lucy Strange who talks about her new book The Secret of Nightingale Wood.  

Clover Stroud talks about her powerful story of an idyllic Oxfordshire childhood shattered by a riding accident that left her mother permanently brain-damaged and sent her searching for a sense of home that had been so violently broken. 

Hear about Carol Donaldson’s adventures when she set out on a series of walks across the marshes, travelling from Gravesend to Whitstable. Both an act of pilgrimage for a landscape she loves and a journey of discovery into why people are drawn to live there. 

Jay Griffiths takes us on a journey through the Wilderness with her book Tristimania.

Richard Osmond’s brilliant debut poetry collection, Useful Verses, follows in the tradition of the best nature writing, being as much about the human world as the natural, the present as the past.

In his latest book, Linescapes, Hugh Warwick unravels the far-reaching ecological consequences of the lines we have drawn through our hedges, walls, roads and railways.

Melissa Harrison celebrates the four seasons in conversation with Dan Richards.

Philip Hoare, author of Leviathan, or, The Whale, returns to an aquatic theme with his new book, RisingTideFallingStar, a composite portrait of the subtle, beautiful, inspired and demented ways in which we have come to terms with our watery planet.

Join Mark Cocker, the celebrated author, naturalist and environmental tutor, on a wildlife safari during which he will be exploring the wildlife at Boldshaves Garden and, weather dependent, identifying the moths from the moth trap he has laid overnight.  

Fiona Reynolds, Anna Pavord and Oliver Hilliam explore the joys to be found in nature, the threats faced by today’s landscapes and the possible solutions to some of the pressing issues of our times.

Garden enthusiasts are invited to visit the Drop-in gardeners surgery to find answers to gardening related queries.

Listen to Alys Fowler in conversation with editor of Observer Food Monthly Allan Jenkins. Alys’ beautiful memoir Plot 29 is about noticing the wild everywhere and what it means to see beauty where you least expect it.

Will Ashon in conversation with Dan Richards about Labyrinth - a quest narrative arguing that we shouldn’t get lost in order to find ourselves, but solely to accept that we are lost in the first place.

The Reverend Peter Owen Jones has walked the length and breadth of the British Isles. In Pathlands, he has collected 21 of his favourite circular walks and shares his thoughts on the experience and the transformative experience of walking.

Christopher Somerville – The January Man: A Year of Walking Britain.  The January Man is the story of a year of walks. Month by month, region by region, and season by season, Times columnist and author Christopher Somerville walks the British Isles, following routes that remind him of his father with whom he shared a love of long distance walking.

Visitors will also be able to taste the best of local produce from an array of street food stalls whose ingredients have been sourced from the fields, gardens, hedges and coastline of the Garden of England.

The location of the Festival is a story of adventure and natural history in itself. The gardens at Boldshaves and the surrounding woodland and farmland are a delight for any nature-lover.

Ticket prices will vary from £5 - £12 depending on the event.  A limited number of day passes are also available for £35 which gives access to all events on the day and entrance to the festival site.

All programmed activities are free for children under 13, accompanied by a responsible adult.

Boldshaves Gardens in Woodchurch, near Tenterden in Kent (TN26 3RA).

To find out more visit http://www.wealdenliteraryfestival.co.uk  or call 01580 292169 / 07880 748352

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