Former Children's Laureate Returns to University of Worcester Storytelling Festival

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Popular author & former Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen returns to the City next week -five years after opening the children’s library at The Hive– as part of an exciting line-up for this year’s University of Worcester Storytelling Festival for Children

Rosen is one of a host of well-known authors, storytellers, illustrators and theatre companies who will entertain and enthuse thousands of schoolchildren throughout October in the annual festival, also known as Beeline.

“I am delighted to re-visit The Hive and be a part of Worcester Beeline Festival,” he said.

“Live storytelling is a very immediate, dynamic way to come into contact with stories. Because we are in the room with the teller, it can feel as if we are part of the telling. We can see our responses affecting the teller. This is why it's often easier to re-tell a story we've been told in a live situation than it is if we read it. And it can give us all confidence to tell new stories. We should treasure all this.”

Rosen, who is behind classics like We’re Going on a Bear Hunt, opened The Hive children's library in 2012 and is part of the four-week annual festival, organised by the University.

Now in its 11th year, the festival will this year involve more than 3,200 children. It runs from Tuesday, 3rd October until Thursday, 26th October, and also features 2015-17 Children’s Laureate, Chris Riddell, David Almond, the acclaimed author of novels like Skellig and Kit’s Wilderness and winner of the 2011 Hans Christian Andersen Award, and Jeremy Strong, best known for stories like There's A Viking In My Bed.

Celebrated storytellers Cat Weatherill, Daniel Morden, Sally Tonge and Amy Douglas will also be entertaining children, while University of Worcester student-led Shenanigans Theatre Company, will give a performance of David Almond’s Skellig.

There will also be performances from Stringcredibles, Tell Tale Hearts, Indigo Moon and Sea Legs Puppet Theatre.

Running alongside the schools programme, there are a number of sessions for families at The Hive each Saturday throughout October, with additional events in the half term holiday.

Anne Hannaford, Director of Arts and Culture at the University, said: “The Festival has grown from the University’s belief in the importance of reading and stories in everyone’s lives. We are the only University in the country that jointly runs a children’s library with the county library service in The Hive. Over the last decade we’ve welcomed many great authors, storytellers, illustrators and theatre companies and this year is no exception.

“The artistic programme we’ve lined up includes two former children’s laureates and storytelling in music from four members of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. We’re also delighted to be seeing more and more children from further afield coming from across the region to be part of the festival.”

For more information on the family events for Beeline visit