Our permanent gallery showcases treasures from our Collection of original art, writing and related materials, with new additions from Tony Ross, one of the world’s most popular children’s book illustrators.

 

This is a special moment for us, as these items are new to our Seven Stories Collection and haven’t been displayed before. 

Visit free and untimed (except when the gallery is being used for creative activities).

The Seven Basic Plots

Many of the items in this exhibition contain one of the plots from the famous theory that there are only 'seven basic plots' in the world! Find out more below: 

Comedy
Comedy explores the stories and things that make us laugh, the different things that people find funny and the joy of sharing a funny story with a friend.
Quest
Quest stories are about a hero heading out on journey to achieve something great. While they face dangers along the way they succeed in achieving their goal.
Voyage and Return
Voyage and Return stories involve characters journeying to strange lands where they overcome threats or learn important lessons before returning home and sharing their adventures with friends and family.
Rags to Riches
Rags to Riches stories have a poor and unhappy hero facing incredible challenges. They gain something, lose it, and then gain it back after overcoming great odds.
Overcoming The Monster
Overcoming the Monster explores the idea that everyone feels scared sometimes and that reading monster stories can help people overcome their fears, whatever they are.
Rebirth
In a Rebirth story the main character often behaves badly for a while as they adjust to change, but, by the end, they discover their true selves.
Tragedy
Tragedy examines what it’s like to feel regret, grief and loss. Sad things happen to everyone but stories about tragedy can help readers to realise that they’re not alone.