MCBF 2015 Lets in the Stars of Children’s Poetry

Over the final weekend of this year’s Manchester Children’s Book Festival, venues across the city played host to a whole series events dedicated to raising the profile of children’s poetry.
Inspired by the success of Let in the Stars, an anthology of original poetry for children, compiled and published by the Manchester Writing School and edited by poet, Mandy Coe, the weekend saw poets and enteratiners take over Urmston Bookshop, Manchester Central Library and Waterstones, Deansgate.
Firstly, Mandy Coe herself led a wonderful workshop for children in Urmston Bookshop. Mandy worked with the children all morning, helping them to pen (and illustrate!) their own poems. Before enjoying a well earned lunch of delicious cakes, everyone read out their poems and even some of the grown ups joined in. Mandy told the children,
Poetry is so, so important when you are growing up. Once you start reading, or writing, a poem, your imagination can take you to all sorts of magical places. You’ve all done absolutely brilliantly today, it’s been wonderful, thank you so much. I think you’re all fantatsic!”
Next up, MCBF 2015 set up camp at Manchester Central Library, where author and entertainer, Dominic Berry, led a fun-filled, open mic poetry afternoon. Readers included poet, Chrissie Gittins, and many members of the audience were eager to get up and read either their favourite poems or their own work. Speaking about the event, Dominic told us,
“I was so impressed! It was amazing to see the action the readers put in, because not all poets are very good a saying their own poems, some of them are rubbish! And some of the young people we had at Manchester Central Library today could run workshops they were so good! They could teach adults a thing or two about delivering poetry!”


Finally, the closing event of this year’s festival saw families pack out the first floor of Waterstones, Deansgate for another great children’s poetry event which, yet again, attracted readers young and old to the microphone as they shared their favourite poetry. Star of the show was Robert Paul Weston who treated us a to an extensive redaing from his new novel (or is it a poem?) Zorgamazoo.
It was only left to Manchester Children’s Book Festival Directors, Kaye Tew and James Draper, to thank the audience and everyone who has helped to make this year’s festival truly special, and the most successful yet! Their very last job was to unveil the mascot for MCBF 2016 – a huge pug! Take a look at the picture below for a sneak peak and don’t forget to to check MCBF.ORG.UK for more details very soon.
Mandy Coe and Robert Paul Weston read to Compton Valance, Charlie the Sea Monkey and the official MCBF 2016 mascot!

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