Have a CRACKING Easter Holidays with Seven Stories

Families of all ages are invited to join Seven Stories – The National Centre for Children’s Books for a cracking Easter full of egg-cellent activities including a dragon egg trail around the museum. Younger visitors will enjoy a range of Maisy themed activities and stories to celebrate the literary mouse’s 25th birthday. If that was not enough, two authors feature in the line-up for The National Centre’s Easter events.

The Easter Bunny was caught by surprise this year when an egg hatched early, only to reveal a scaly dragon! Those who know their Hungarian Horntails from their Swedish Short-Snouts are invited to join Seven Stories for a hunt the dragon egg trail and story times followed by a fierce round of Dragon Bingo. 

During the Easter holidays, visitors with a beady eye might spot bespoke, multi-sensory dragon eggs hidden around the building.  The seven stunning, tactile eggs will enchant visitors of all ages with their vibrant colours and intriguing sounds.  But where have the eggs come from and what breed of dragon will hatch out? On arrival, families will collect a trail from reception and are invited to use their imagination to create stories behind each rare discovery.  These unique eggs have been designed to replicate the intricate drawings in Jim Kay’s illustrated version of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J. K. Rowling. 

The Easter holidays will be the last chance to see Seven Stories’ exclusive exhibition Illustrating Harry Potter which documents the creative process behind award-winning illustrator Jim Kay’s phenomenal illustrations re-imagining the modern day classic by J.K. Rowling.  The exhibition will close on Sunday 24 April and be followed by an exhibition commemorating the 80th anniversary of Little Tim and the Brave Sea Captain by children’s literature great – Edward Ardizzone.

Seven Stories wishes happy birthday to a very popular literary mouse this Easter with the addition of a host of activities to celebrate Maisy Mouse’s 25th birthday.  Learn how to Paint Like Lucy (Wednesday 30th March – Saturday 2nd April, 2-4pm) and experiment with mixed media and splash with vibrant primary colours to explore Lucy Cousin’s distinctive, trademark style. Visitors are tasked with bringing along their own plastic bottles to upcycle in the Seven Stories Studio and add to a Hooray for Fish installation.

All week, families will design their own miniature home in a shoebox for Maisy, complete with tiny tables, mini rugs and petite picture frames.Local retail businesses have kindly donated their surplice shoeboxes to the National Museum and Seven Stories is inviting visitors to ‘think green’ and bring along their old shoeboxes too.

Young visitors will enjoy story times dedicated to Lucy Cousin’s timeless picture books and if they tip toe quietly - visitors will spot Maisy hidden around the Studio creating the ideal photo opportunity.  Seven Stories is encouraging families to share their snaps on social media using the tag #FriendswithMaisy.

International author - Andy Griffiths - flies in from across the pond to introduce Tyneside book lovers to his sparky tales.  A phenomenal success in native Australia, Andy has often shared a stage with children’s book superstar Jeff Kinney, the author of The Diary of a Wimpy Kid.  Andy is no stranger to the zany world of best-selling books and families will be left in stitches as he shares from his latest book The 52-Storey Treehouse

Local author Chris Callaghan joins Seven Stories for an author event dripping in chocolate. Visitors will hear Chris read from his debut chocolate flavoured children's book The Great Chocoplot and take part in a lively Q&A.  Those attending this event will not be disappointed by the chocolatey fun this Easter holidays...but beware the impending Chocopocalypse! 

Visitors are reminded that Seven Stories will be closed all day on Easter Sunday 27 March.

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Media Contact

For images, quotes or interviews please contact:

Hannah Lambert – Marketing and Digital Coordinator

Seven Stories, Ouseburn Valley, Newcastle. NE1 2PQ.

T: 0300 330 1095 ext 223

E: hannah.lambert@sevenstories.org.uk

Notes to Editor:

Event details:

*Author Event* The Great Chocoplot: Is there a Chocopocalypse coming? Tuesday 5 April, 2.30pm, suitable for ages 7+. Free event. Admission Required.

The Great Chocoplot is local author Chris Callaghan’s debut novel and the first to be published by Chicken House Publishers following an “Open Coop” call out for unpublished manuscripts.

*Author Event* The 52-Storey Treehouse with Andy Griffiths, Saturday 9th April, 2pm, for all the family. Free event. Admission Required. Booking advised. Book online at www.sevenstories.org.uk

About Andy Griffiths

Andy Griffiths is Australia’s most popular children’s writer. He is the author of over 20 books, including nonsense verse, badly drawn cartoons, short stories, comic novels and creative writing textbooks. Over the past 15 years Andy’s books have been New York Times bestsellers, won over 50 children’s choice awards, been adapted as a television cartoon series and sold over four million copies worldwide.

Sensory Dragon Eggs

The seven dragon eggs have been commissioned by talented local textile artist Naomi Pugh of Textiles by Gnomes: Find out more here www.textilesbygnomes.com

Illustrating Harry Potter Exhibition

With a sprinkling of Floo Powder, you will be transported to the enchanting world of Harry Potter.  Intricate sketches, models and stunning pencil drawings reveal Jim’s complex, creative process, from inspiration to final illustration.  Seven Stories worked with Bloomsbury Children’s Books to showcase these original illustrations, sketches, models and final prints to celebrate Jim Kay’s stunning full-colour illustrations for J.K.Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.

Admission to Seven Stories required. Supported by Bloomsbury Publishing UK.


Seven Stories – The National Centre for Children’s Books.

Seven Stories is the only place in Britain dedicated to the art of children’s books and the joy of reading, and one of just a few such places in the world. Our work is enjoyed by over 150,000 people every year.

Everything we do aims to inspire children and grown-ups to be curious, imaginative and creative. We strive to ensure that people of all ages, backgrounds and abilities can take part to enjoy a lifetime of reading for pleasure.

Our home is a carefully converted Victorian warehouse in Newcastle upon Tyne in the North East of England. We opened in 2005 and our seven floors house galleries for exhibitions, performances and creative spaces, a specialist children’s bookshop and a café.

Seven Stories is widely recognised for our abilities and achievements. We have established an important collection of artwork, manuscripts and archives of Britain’s most acclaimed writers and illustrators for children from 1930s to the present day. We bring this unique treasure trove to life through playful and immersive exhibitions, an entertaining and informative public events programme and research opportunities.

Seven Stories was awarded National status by Arts Council England in 2012 in recognition of the significance of our Collection and its high standard of care, and the excellent way that we engage with our visitors and users. We were also awarded with a National Lottery Award in September 2013 after being voted the UK’s favourite education project.