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Loogabarooga Festival opens this week in Loughborough

Loogabarooga will be hitting the town in Loughborough over October half-term as the popular children’s illustrated literature festival returns for its third year.

The festival begins with Waterstones Children’s Laureate, Lauren Child appearing in her own show at Loughborough Town Hall on 18 October, talking about her favourite characters including Charlie & Lola and Clarice Bean.

Other events and shows on the opening day include artist, James Chantry creating an interactive art exhibition and an Alice in Wonderland themed chocolate tea party. The Festival continues until 24 October with highlights such as The Hairy Maclary and Friends show, Little Howard's Big Show for Kids, the first-ever Loogabarooga Comic Fair and a new Loogabarooga Dog Show.

Lauren Child has specially picked a selection of original work from her private collection in ‘The Art of Lauren Child – Adventures with Charlie and Lola and friends’ exhibition at Charnwood Museum.

Loogabarooga 2017 will also include a new town trail, storytelling sessions, and advice on how to write and illustrate your own book. There will also be appearances from some local authors and illustrators such as Dave Shelton, Andrew Everett-Stewart and Gemma Denham.

Tickets for all of the Loogabarooga events can be booked online at www.loogabarooga.com

Loughborough will also be home to a range of unique, hand-painted book benches again this year. The book benches will be located across the town centre and will feature cover artwork from some of the nation’s favourite Ladybird children’s stories including Shopping with Mother, Cinderella and Bunnikins Picnic Party. This year will also see a Lauren Child Clarice Bean book bench, on loan from the National Literacy Trust for the duration of the festival, and located at Charnwood Museum.

Sylvia Wright, head of leisure and culture at Charnwood Borough Council, said: "We are really excited to be hosting the Loogabarooga Festival once again in Loughborough.

"There are so many events taking place, of such good quality, that there is something for the whole family to enjoy.

"We have illustrators, authors, workshops, trails to follow and much more. All the events are woven together with their celebration of children's illustrated literature and of course Loughborough is synonymous with the genre as the world famous Ladybird books were first printed here.

"We are very proud of the festival and look forward to seeing people at this year's events."

The Loogabarooga Festival is organised by Charnwood Borough Council and Leicestershire Promotions in partnership with Leicestershire County Council and supported by Love Loughborough.

Loughborough has had a long association with children’s literature since the very first Ladybird book was produced by a jobbing printer called Wills & Hepworth in the town during the First World War. Ladybird books were printed at Angel Yard in Loughborough from 1915-1973 and the first Loogabarooga Festival in 2015 coincided with Ladybird Books’ centenary.