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Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

Big plans, bright future

Brand new book festival set for Stockton

Thursday, October 06, 2016

A FUN-FILLED day of activities including author sessions, a book-themed specialist market, a treasure hunt and visits from fantastical literary characters is all on offer at the first ever Stockton Book Festival.

On Saturday 15 October, between 10am and 4pm, the inaugural festival brings something for the whole family to enjoy on Stockton High Street and at Stockton Central Library and is free of charge.

Celebrating all things books with a theme of rhymes, crimes and mischief – the event will also launch the Stockton Children’s Book of the Year 2017 and include a story reading from last year’s winning author Ellie Irving in the High Street marquee.

The event begins at 10am at the marquee on Stockton High Street when costumed characters arrive to delight young children. Stockton Town Centre’s array of high street chain and independent shops along with a variety of cafes, bars and restaurants means there’s plenty for all ages on offer.

Councillor Norma Wilburn, Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Arts, Leisure and Culture, said: “The Stockton Book Festival will be a real treat for bookworms of all ages and it will be great to see the High Street and Stockton Central Library bustling with these family-friendly activities.

“There’s so much to look forward to and get involved in but a particular highlight will be Willy Wonka’s Sweet Making, taking place in the Stockton High Street marquee, where The Victorian Sweet Kitchen will be demonstrating how to create weird and wonderful sweet treats. Younger visitors should keep an eye open for visits from characters from their favourite books including Tinkerbell, Alice in Wonderland and Horrid Henry!

“I’d encourage everyone to come down to Stockton to enjoy a family day out at the Stockton Book Festival.”

There will also be unique ‘Skype Storytime’ sessions taking place at Stockton Central Library, perfect for adult readers. Best-selling crime author Elizabeth Haynes will speak live to the audience between 1.45pm and 2.15pm, while crime author Peter James will read from his new novel between 2.30pm and 3pm.

DRAKE – The Bookshop on Silver Street will also be running Skype sessions featuring readings from well-known children’s authors including Richard Byrne and Bethan Woollvin. Follow @drakebookshop on Twitter for updates and timings.

For more information and a schedule of events, visit

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