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Published Tuesday 9th of April 2013 10:53:00 AM

Hazlegrove Prep School in Somerset has held its first ever Festival of Literature, during which a range of well-known authors, illustrators and experts visited the school to share its passion for reading with the local community.

Hazlegrove pupils were joined by children from local schools to listen to authors as varied as Andy Briggs, Helen Dunmore, Angie Sage, Gill Lewis, Philip Reeve, Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell. The author/illustrator Marcia Williams gave an inspiring workshop and Emma Chichester Clark delighted the Pre-Prep children with readings from the Blue Kangaroo stories.

Adults were not forgotten, historian and broadcaster, James Holland gave a lecture on Fortress Malta; Dirk Foch from Renaissance Learning inspired parents and teachers about 'How to Raise a Reader'; The Battle in the Air was a panel of military experts talking about the books that inspired them to fly and fight; and a creative writing workshop with Tobias Jones was so successful that a second event was added to the calendar. The week was rounded off with a moving lecture by writer and journalist John McCarthy who spoke of his hostage ordeal at the hands of Islamic extremists and his vision of peace in the Middle East.

Other activities during the week included a book fair, quizzes and competitions, as well as an outing to Corfe and Studland for a 'Hazlegrove go Mad in Dorset' day, where over 120 children, parents and grandparents went off on the trail of the Famous Five.

Headmaster Richard Fenwick comments: 'We are delighted with the success of our first Festival of Literature many children were inspired by the visiting authors and a buzz of enthusiasm can still be felt around the school. We are delighted that so many local schools were able to join us. Hopefully the Festival will be repeated in future years and will become a fixture in the school calendar.'

You can read more about the Hazlegrove Festival of Literature at www.hazlegrove.co.uk
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