BATH CHILDREN’S LITERATURE FESTIVAL – Where books and stories come alive!

Bath Children’s Literature Festival returns this autumn from Friday 23rd September until Sunday 2nd October! As Europe’s largest stand-alone children’s book festival, we are welcoming household names, debut authors and a host of illustrators to Bath for an exciting line-up for all ages.

In our ten-day celebration of books, there is plenty for families to look forward to, from live story telling sessions for pre-school children, through a wide mix of events for middle grade readers, to events aimed at teen and Young Adult (YA) audiences. In addition to live events for families, we have created a full programme of schools events attended by hundreds of local school children. We can’t wait to see you all!

We are over-the-moon to announce Alice Oseman, the creator of the #1 bestselling Heartstopper graphic novel series, is the 2022 guest curator for our teen and YA strand of events. As well as appearing at the festival in two events, one about the success of Heartstopper, and another with fellow writer Juno Dawson, Alice has curated a selection of top events for teens and YA audiences across our school and public programme. These include events from YA author Simon James Green, manga creators, Saturday AM Comics, and celebrity reporter and author Benjamin Dean.

This year’s festival highlights include:

  • A return to Bath of much-loved national treasures Michael Rosen and Jacqueline Wilson
  • Many writers will be celebrating what makes us different including TV comedian Rosie Jones, award-winning writer Elle McNicoll and former CBeebies presenter Cerrie Burnell
  • Back by popular demand are the current Waterstone’s Children’s Laureate Cressida Cowell, Joseph Coelho, poet, author and word magician, Robin Stevens unveiling her thrilling new mystery series and multi award-winning M. G. Leonard
  • Some of our favourite illustrators popular for their draw-along events, Liz Pichon, Steven Lenton and Rob Biddulph.
  • Sharing LGBTQ+ stories are comedic novel writer Simon James Green and heart-warming writer Jodie Lancet-Grant alongside Alice Oseman and Juno Dawson
  • Well-known entertainers turned successful children’s authors, David Baddiel, Julian Clary, Richard Ayoade and Dermot O’ Leary
  • A celebration of Black history and popular contemporary stories starring children of colour with Melody Triumph and Millie Mensah from The Black Curriculum, as well as Patrice Lawrence and Serena Patel 
  • Much-loved novelists Emma Carroll, Antony McGowan, Hannah Gold, Kiran Millwood Hargrave and Katherine Rundell
  • The festival will be promoting stories of acceptance, for ourselves and others. Bath-based former Olympic gold medallist Amy Williams will be exploring the challenges of training body and mind to be the very best they can, but also learning how to face adversity

We’ve teamed up with The Egg Theatre to host a weekend Happiness Hub. This will include a brilliant session with mental health ambassador Dr Alex George chatting to TV and radio personality and fellow mental health advocate Katie Thistleton, with his manual A Better Day and creative sessions inspired to bring joy and silliness. There will also be a series of free drop-in activities in The Egg café where young people will be able to find out where to get further support.

There is also FREE entrance for all to The American Museum and Gardens in Bath on Sunday 2 October. Visit Hatching the Past: American Dinosaur Explorers and learn all about dinosaurs. The museum will be hosting storytelling sessions featuring dinosaurs, hosting craft activities, there will be a reading corner and fun for the whole family.

Head over to our WHAT’S ON page to view the whole programme

Tickets go on general release on 1st July! Members who sign up are able to get priority booking so SIGN UP NOW to make sure you get tickets for the events you don’t want to miss!

Bath Festivals is an arts charity and we would like to thank its patrons, members and volunteers for their continued support as well as their partners and supporters. This year Bath Children’s Literature Festival partners include Bath Recreation, Bath Spa University, Bath Business Improvement District, Kingswood School, Novia, Rotork, Bath & North East Somerset Council, Frugi, Bath & Wiltshire Parent Magazine, Total Guide to Bath, Minuteman Press, Mr B’s Emporium, Bath Box Office, Centurion Travel, The Forum, Bath Royal Literary and Science Institution, The Egg and The American Museum and Gardens. We would also like to thank The Roper Family Charitable Trust and the Coles-Medlock Foundation.

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