Great Malvern Festival of Stories for Children: 24-29 October 2023

Activities | Family Fun | Festival | The Arts | What's On

Cartoon logo with hills, bright colours and fantasy elements

The Great Malvern Festival of Stories for Children is all set to return following the huge success of last year’s first ever festival.

Taking place from 24 October to 29 October 2023, the six day festival has been given the green light to return across a number of venues throughout Great Malvern, with an extra two days added for local schools.

The first festival took place in October 2022 with 40 events, over 20 artists performing, 1000 tickets sold and over 600 school pupils attending on the school days. The first four days of this year’s programme will be aimed at local schools, followed by a family programme on Saturday and Sunday which includes both ticketed and free events, open to everyone.

Formed by Malvern Hills District Council in partnership with Boffy Arts Events People the festival is a celebration of stories, with professional storytellers, children’s authors, illustrators, puppet companies, musicians, and theatre. This year the likes of expert stop motion animation filmmakers Aardman will be holding workshops and Horrid Henry author Francesca Simon introduces her newest book. Fantastic storytelling and puppetry will take place in a variety of venues including the Storytelling Tent in the Priory grounds, Lyttleton Well and even inside the belly of a whale!

As well as ticketed events there are free storytelling sessions, art activities, film screenings and stalls by local authors across the weekend. On Saturday Freedom Leisure will be running their free Xplorer Trail – a fun navigation challenge. Find them by the play area in Priory Park.

Local author stalls will be open from 10am – 4pm on Saturday and Sunday and art activities with Gail Hanks take place from 10am – 4pm on both weekend days too.

Steve Boffy, from Boffy Arts Events People, said: “I was delighted with the success of last year’s festival and the brilliant response it received. I am now looking forward to building on that success and hope to develop the festival and see it become a much-loved annual fixture in the local cultural calendar”

Tickets are available to pre-book only via Malvern Theatres Box Office, call 01684 892277  or follow the link below:

Book Tickets here

What’s On

The Great Malvern Festival of Stories for Children is part funded by the UK government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund #UKSPF

Thank you to the festival sponsors:

UK Shared Prosperity Fund logos

With special thanks to:

With special thanks to everyone who helped the festival to go ahead – festival organisers Boffy Arts Events People and Jane Churchill as well as book publishers: Andersen Press, Bloomsbury Children’s Books, Chicken House, Faber Children’s Books, HarperCollins Children’s Books, Little Tiger, Macmillan Children’s Books, Otter-Barry Books, Simon & Schuster Children’s Books and Walker Books. Festival illustrations by Gail Hanks.

Schools Programme

This year’s Great Malvern Festival of Stories for Children includes an additional day for schools with the introduction of a Secondary Schools’ Day where Carnegie Medal winning Tanya Landman, the author of more than forty books for children and young adults will be visiting The Chase and Dyson Perrins High Schools.

Local Primary Schools have been invited to attend the festival with a fantastic programme of authors, storytellers, and puppetry, including Authors James Carter, Matt Goodfellow and Jasbinder Bilan; Storytellers Amy Douglas, Sally Tonge and Katy Cawkwell and live Puppetry from Clive Chandler, Fetch Theatre and Indigo Moon.

There are still some places available for the school programme so any school that has not yet booked a place should get in touch: [email protected]