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Bringing the art of Ladybird Books to the streets of Loughborough

Eight unique, hand-painted BookBenches have been specially-produced to celebrate the centenary of Ladybird Books.

They will be installed across Loughborough in Leicestershire as part of the Loogabarooga Festival and will feature the cover artwork of some of the nation’s favourite children’s stories including Shopping with Mother, Cinderella and Bunnikins Picnic Party.

The benches have been commissioned by Charnwood Borough Council and developed by Wild in Art, one of the UK’s leading creative producers of mass-appeal public art events and education projects. The BookBench sculpture was created by Wild in Art’s Creative Director Chris Wilkinson, and professional artists have designed and decorated eight, which will be located in the Market Place, Carillon Court Shopping Centre and Queen’s Park for the duration of the Festival.

Loogabarooga Festival will take place in Loughborough from 22-26 October 2015 and is based on the theme of ‘incredible illustrations and brilliant books’. As well as appearances from some of the nation’s favourite children’s authors and illustrators, it will also showcase new and existing illustrated literature for children through a series of workshops, events, readings and activities.

Events at the Loogabarooga Festival will include workshops with children’s favourites such as Korky Paul, illustrator of Winnie the Witch; Caroline Holden-Hotopf, illustrator of the Adrian Mole books; Nick Butterworth, author/illustrator of Percy the Park Keeper and The Whisperer; Knife and Packer, illustrators of Fleabag Monkeyface; and Steven Butler, author of Diary of Dennis the Menace.

Charlie Langhorne, Director at Wild in Art, said: “The BookBench has proved to be the perfect canvas through which to unite visual art and reading for enjoyment. We’re delighted artists have brought celebrated stories from Ladybird Books to life on the sculptures and that their work will be inspiring live story-telling events as part of the Loogabarooga Festival.”

Councillor Hilary Fryer, Charnwood Borough Council's Cabinet member for Open Spaces and Leisure, said: “We’re proud that Loughborough is the home of Ladybird Books and these unique benches are a great way to commemorate Ladybird’s 100 year anniversary. Lovers of children’s books and illustrations are in for a real treat at the Loogabarooga Festival with fantastic events including a wonderful We Love Ladybird exhibition at Charnwood Museum.”

For more information and to book tickets for the events at Loogabarooga Festival, visit www.loogabarooga.com

The Loogabarooga Festival is organised by Charnwood Borough Council in partnership with Leicestershire County Council, Leicester Shire Promotions and supported by Arts Council England, Love Loughborough and Loughborough Building Society.