Fun events and activities to keep you and your family entertained this Autumn

This Autumn Seven Stories, the National Centre for Children’s Books, has another season packed full of fun and adventure to keep families, book lovers and budding writers entertained over the coming months.

Kicking things off will be Roald Dahl’s Scrumdiddlyumptious Birthday Celebrations. From Friday 13 to Sunday 15 September families will be able to join in a weekend of wondrous, rambunctious fun and celebrate Roald Dahl’s birthday with Dahl-icious dressing up, phizz-whizzing craft activities and whoopsy whiffing books in Dahl themed story times at 10.30am, 1pm and 3.30pm every day.

Seven Stories will also be celebrating Dahl’s passion for chocolate with Chris Callaghan author of The Great Chocoplot – a story about the END of chocolate, gulp! This is a chance to find out about the dreaded Chocopocalypse and learn some unusual chocolate facts before making chocolate themed inspired crafts on Saturday 14 September at 2pm.

On Saturday 14 September visitors can also meet bestselling author of The House With Chicken Legs Sophie Anderson. Dive into the mystical universe Sophie created for her new book The Girl Who Speaks Bear and discover her top tips on how to recreate fairytales. There’s also a chance to get crafty and make a bear print to take home.

This Autumn Seven Stories will be combining two of its favourite things for the first time – story time and yoga! In partnership with Yoga Therapies, Seven Stories will host Story Yoga a lively reading of a chosen book read by a Story Catcher before Fiona, from Yoga Therapies, teaches a number of yoga poses inspired by the chosen books. On Saturday 21 September at 11am children aged 5+ and their families are being invited to head into the deep dark woods for an adventure with The Gruffalo (Julia Donaldson & Alex Scheffler) and see if they can be as quick as a fox, as graceful as an owl or curl up as small as a mouse. On Saturday 5 October at 11am families can limber up to explore how the body works with Funnybones (Janet & Allan Ahlberg) and discover how our bones fit together as well as why we can bend, stretch and shake without falling apart.

Budding writers aged 7+ will be able to learn how to write a villain that they love to hate but that they hate to admit they love in September (Saturday 28 September, 2pm), discover the art of writing horror stories that will make their hair stand on end in October (Saturday 12 October, 2pm) and find out how to create the perfect comic book with realistic and believable dialogue in November (Saturday 2 November, 2pm) with writer Florianne Humphrey.

On Friday 1 November Opera North will be returning to Seven Stories with two special musical events for little ones and their families. At 11.30am musicians from Opera North’s orchestra will take families on a magical interactive journey to explore the wonderful music of Saint-Saëns’ Carnival of the Animals in Little Listeners. Then, at 2pm led by professional musicians from Opera North, they can sing, play and move to music in Little Singers.

On Saturday 16 November at 11am and 2pm fledgling detectives will be able to join adventuretellers Brooke Conway and Hannah Mathieson for Mary Queen of Scots & the Missing Shortbread. Queen Elizabeth’s delicious shortbread has mysteriously gone missing and she has accused her cousin Mary Queen of Scots of gobbling it all up! Brave families can join Brooke and Hannah on a quest where they will come face to face with mythical and mystical creatures from Scottish folk tales to discover if Mary really did eat the shortbread in the first place?

This October half term (Saturday 19 October to Sunday 4 November) fearless visitors can discover spine chilling crafts, silly skeletons and strange specimens in the museum’s Spooky Science Lab; head to the Witches' Kitchen for a gameshow inspired story time guaranteed to jangle your bones; be brave and join Seven Stories very own spiritualist Madame Arfarti for a Ghost Tour of Seven Stories or bust some moves at DJ Bone Jangles Spooky Jazz Party – a deathly disco where every ‘body’ is welcome and creatures of the night do the jack-o-lantern jive! Plus bump into Dr Leg and friends as a team of eerie experts pop up around the building with funny and fascinating facts to share!

Youngsters can also have a spook-takular time in October by joining author Vivian French as she pops into Seven Stories bookshop to talk about her spellbinding new adventure Tom, Tallulah and the Witches on Wednesday 13 October at 11am, or families can meet Em Lynas author of the hilarious Witch School series for a Toadspit Witch Workshop on Saturday 19 October at 2pm before finally discovering more about the enchanting Apprentice Witch Series from author James Nicol on Saturday 26 October at 2pm.

Of course while all this is going on, there are still Seven Stories regular events taking place throughout the building. On the first Saturday of the month Seven Stories doors open a little earlier for its Early Bird Opening so families can have a stress-free visit with no music or noisy tannoy announcements and plenty of skilled staff on hand to help with anything visitors might need.  The first weekend of every month visitors can also take part in a Brilliant Bookswap, book recycling at its best and on the last weekend of every month families are encouraged to come in fancy dress for Dress-Up Weekend.

Every Wednesday at 1.30pm (during term time) little ones can join Story Catchers to bring favourite stories to life with sensory props, sounds and textures in Sensory Stories. Parents or carers with children aged 0-1 can take part in the popular Baby Book Social every Wednesday and Friday between 3 and 5pm. This is a chance to visit Seven Stories bookshop, hear a reading of a story and discuss what you like about the book all whilst your babies are entertained with toys.

For more information about what’s coming up at Seven Stories this Autumn and to book tickets visit our What's On page.