Roald Dahl fancy dress contest is just one of a host of events as Wisbech celebrates reading festival

Wisbech Reads Festival. Picture: Steve Williams.

Wisbech Reads Festival. Picture: Steve Williams. - Credit: Archant

The wonderful world of books was opened up to children during the Wisbech Reads Festival, which came to town last week.

Wisbech Reads Festival. Picture: Steve Williams.

Wisbech Reads Festival. Picture: Steve Williams. - Credit: Archant

At the start of the festival, young people from schools across the area converged on Orchards Primary on Monday for a storytelling journey with author and illustrator Alex Milway.

There was poetry, a performance by Thomas Clarkson students and magical tales for children to enjoy.

Wisbech Reads Festival. Picture: Steve Williams.

Wisbech Reads Festival. Picture: Steve Williams. - Credit: Archant

Then on Saturday (9) the festival came to town when everyone was invited to attend a host of workshops and fun events designed to encourage children to enjoy books. The day kicked off at 10am with the opening of the reading tree in Wisbech Market Place.

There was then a parade to St Peter’s Church led by Orchards Street dance crew, and a series of workshops and theatre shows later on.

Wisbech Reads

Wisbech Reads - Credit: Archant


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For those who like to dress up there was a Roald Dahl fancy dress contest with prizes, music, fun inflatables, shows, poetry and story sacks as well as drop in art sessions, a reading dog and a reading cafe.

Nicola Parker, headteacher of Orchards Primary School, said: “I don’t think it could have gone better. It ran like a well-oiled machine.

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“We had 2,000 children who were split up into two projects. The two authors we had working together had the children in stitches and there was a very well presented play.

“The children moved around my school so sensibly,” she added.

“The festival really shows our community at their best. I really could not be more proud of the whole team.”

Mrs Parker said the festival has had a lasting effect on children. “One child was overheard saying ‘this is the best day ever’ and another said ‘I’m going to go home and ask if we can buy some books’. It’s great because the children are becoming so enthused about reading, now they don’t see it as just something they have to do.”

Next year’s schools festival will take place on July 3 and the community day on July 8.

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