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Explore Storytelling Britain

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To celebrate World Book Day on Thursday 3rd March, the book worms at holiday letting agency www.cottages.com are offering a collection of Julia Donaldson books to help fill the bookcases of your little readers!  To enter just complete our Rafflecopter entry at the bottom of this post which will be drawn on World Book Day itself 3 March 2016!

Julia Donaldson collection

The cottage company has more than 15,000 properties across the UK and to help you choose your next holiday destination, they have put together a map of places to visit connected with some of our favourite children’s authors and stories.

If you’ve always wanted to explore the places that inspired your favourite authors or keep the family entertained by their favourite characters coming to life, why not use this handy guide to plan your next outing?

CDC Storytelling InfoGraphic

Mavellous Museum for Roald Dahl Fans

See the fantastical world of author Roald Dahl come alive at the museum created in his honour. Featuring three interactive galleries, find out about Roald Dahl’s school days, see his original Writing Hut and in The Story Centre put your imagination centre-stage with fantabulous activities to inspire your little writer.

Roald Dahl Museum, HP16 0AL


The Windmill, Wendover, nr. Aylesbury, Property Ref: PKKW

Enjoy a unique holiday in this detached windmill, built around 1800, now converted to provide comfortable spacious accommodation over five floors with spectacular views over the Chiltern Hills from the second floor sitting room. Used as a working windmill until 1900 and then the home of an actress and a music publisher, The Windmill, now minus its sails, is located in the historic market town of Wendover. Set in a quiet location, it has an attractive enclosed rear garden.

Nestling in a gap in the Chiltern Hills, conveniently located to visit the Roald Dahl museum and Whipsnade Zoo. The area is blessed with a variety of walks through some of southern England’s most enjoyable countryside; the famous Ridgeway Path runs right down Wendover High Street.

Price: WAS £839, NOW £788 for three nights’ self-catering arriving on 21st March 2016. Sleeps 10 people and two pets. www.cottages.com  / 0345 498 6900


Find Stick Man, Stick Lady and Family Three

The latest hit from favourite Julia Donaldson has been brought to life by The Forestry Commission which has created a series of Stick Man Trails throughout the UK. Not only is the trail a great way to explore nature, with a host of downloadable activities from their website, you can even have fun on rainy days!


Breathe in the stunning countryside which inspired Beatrix Potter

A visit to the Lake District is a great experience in itself, but with such a strong association to the stories of Beatrix Potter, it’s the perfect opportunity to find out more about this incredible author. Younger children can enjoy the Beatrix Potter Lake District Trail, following the clues to find her iconic characters amongst the countryside and for older children, a visit to her house is a brilliant insight in to the writer’s life.


The Cottage, High Oxen Fell, nr. Coniston, Property Ref: 948

This cottage adjoins a 17th-century farmhouse on a traditional Lakeland working hill farm, once owned by Beatrix Potter, now owned by the National Trust. It enjoys a very quiet and secluded position, in a superb setting surrounded by rocky bracken-covered hills and high fells, in the heart of Lakeland. The views from all windows are across the magnificent Langdale Valley to the surrounding woods and mountains. Enjoy the tranquil splendour of this idyllic setting in a TV free cottage to enable you to relax in peace of a true away from it all holiday.

Price: £419 for seven nights’ self-catering arriving on 26th April 2016. Sleeps four people. www.cottages.com  / 0345 498 6900


Wonderful Wizardry

For Harry Potter fans, there are so many places to visit across the UK, all with magical connections to the wizard world of Harry and Hogwarts. Whether it’s a trip to Alnwick Castle or Durham Cathedral to see the locations from the film or a day at Harry Potter World where you can sample Bertie Botts Every Flavour Beans straight from Diagon Alley, there’s plenty to suit every J.K Rowling fan.

Harry Potter World, WD25 7LR


Alnwick Castle, NE66 1YU

Glenfinnan Viaduct, PH37 4LT

Durham Cathedral, DH1 3EH

A Bear who likes Marmalade

The classic stories of Paddington Bear, and the more recent film adaptation can be brought to life with a trip to Paddington Station. See where Michael Bond’s fictional bear was found and if you have time, why not take the Paddington Bear bus tour which takes in some of the famous locations from the film.

Michael Bond’s Paddington Bear at Paddington Station and bus tour


Spend a Day with Peppa and Friends

For fans of Peppa, a visit to Peppa Pig World is a perfect day out with the family. Have fun on the rides, meet some of your favourite characters and jump in some very muddy puddles!

Mark Baker, Phil Davies and Neville Astley, Peppa Pig World, SO51 6AL


Choo Choo!

For most Thomas fans, a trip to the local train station is a great way of spending an hour, but if you’re looking for a family day out, with 12 wonderful themed rides and a spectacular indoor play area why not visit Thomas Land at Drayton Manor?

Thomas the Tank Engine, Thomas Land, B78 3TW


Step back in time with the Railway Children

A trip to the picturesque Yorkshire town of Haworth offers the chance to see the train station featured in the film versions of E. Nesbit’s Railway Children. A real glimpse into the past, the traditional station is a great introduction to the classic book of adventure. Haworth also has a wealth of literary history with connections to the Bronte sisters for slightly older readers.

Oakworth Station, Haworth


Messing about on the River

Join Ratty, Mr Toad and Badger at the River and Rowing Museum, just off the Thames. See the characters of Kenneth Grahame’s Wind in the Willows come alive and learn more about the river systems and environment in the process. You can also enjoy watching the boats and rowers take on the water outside.

River and Rowing Museum, RG9 1BF


The Wonderful World of Winnie the Pooh

A.A Milne was inspired to write his endearing collection of stories by Ashdown Forest, close to his home of Hartfield in East Sussex. There are a number of Pooh Walks to help guide you through the settings for some of his favourite tales and see Pooh, Christopher Robin, Piglet and Eeyore come to life.

A.A. Milne’s Winnie the Pooh at Ashdown Forest


The Oast House, Nutley, Property Ref: PJJX

Lovingly restored, this is an unusual detached period barn with a wealth of exposed beams nestling in the owner’s 15 acres of grounds. It has its own small garden area and is situated on the edge of the Ashdown Forest, also known the world over as the home of A.A. Milne’s character Winnie the Pooh.

This area offers 6,500 acres of open heathland on the highest sandy ridge top of the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Despite its name, woodland makes up less than 40% of the total area. Sheep, cows and goats graze freely side by side amidst the walkers and motorists.

Price: WAS £971, NOW £918 for seven nights’ self-catering arriving on 19th March 2016. Sleeps eight people. www.cottages.com  / 0345 498 6900


I’m Late, I’m Late, for a Very Important Date!

Why not treat Alice in Wonderland fans to their very own Mad Hatter’s tea party? At the St James Court Hotel in London, the eclectic menu of cakes and pastries include ‘Queen of Hearts’ Mango Tarts, ‘Drink Me’ strawberry potion, ‘Caterpillar’s Mushroom’ Raspberry Marshmallows and Pocket Watch macaroons. Book at least 24 hours in advance to secure your place!

St James Court Hotel London, SW1E 6AF


Famous Five and Secret Seven Come Alive

Enid Blyton is synonymous with Dorset, which with an array of beaches and countryside is a great holiday destination in itself. The town of Purbeck is a great place to start, as the area which inspired the Famous Five stroies. There are a number of local activities available including a location tour and museum to learn more about the author. Make sure you stop for some fantastic ice cream and ginger beer!



See the Tartan Bear

Author Mary Tourtel wrote and illustrated the Rupert Bear stories and at the Canterbury museum, fans can see original artworks, as well as memorabilia and images of the latest animated Rupert Bear.


This posted has been created in collaboration with Cottages.com

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  • Reply
    Sarah Christie
    25th February 2016 at 7:49 am

    What a great post, In love how you can print and track some literary greats, You know how I love Harry Potter and have visited a few sites. Such an important thing for children to love literature x

  • Reply
    Catherine McAlinden
    25th February 2016 at 7:58 am

    Such a hard choice! I think I’d say Room on the Broom.

  • Reply
    Maureen Parker
    25th February 2016 at 8:45 am

    Got tobe Harry Potter i get so carried away reading them to my Granddaughter.

    • Reply
      Tracy Nixon
      25th February 2016 at 10:53 am

      Julia Donaldson didn’t write the Harry Potter books – it was J. K. Rowling.

  • Reply
    Katherine Teff
    25th February 2016 at 10:10 am

    The Gruffalo- the family can recite it by heart and still love it!

  • Reply
    iain maciver
    25th February 2016 at 10:51 am

    Room on the Broom

  • Reply
    Tracy Nixon
    25th February 2016 at 10:51 am

    Room on a Broom! Love the rhymes!

  • Reply
    Heledd - Running in Lavender
    25th February 2016 at 10:54 am

    Love, love this post!! I’m saving this one for future reference. So many great family day out spots in one place. Great work!

  • Reply
    jo hutchinson
    25th February 2016 at 11:01 am

    Tales from Acorn Wood: Fox’s Socks

  • Reply
    Jayne Townson
    25th February 2016 at 11:39 am

    Mine is What the Ladybird Heard Next.

  • Reply
    Paula Barker
    25th February 2016 at 11:48 am

    It’s got to be the gruffalo

  • Reply
    Rachel Craig
    25th February 2016 at 12:42 pm

    The Gruffalo.

  • Reply
    Isabel O
    25th February 2016 at 12:58 pm

    I’ve actually only read The Gruffalo but I do like it, it’s a lovely book with brilliant illustrations.

  • Reply
    laura banks
    25th February 2016 at 1:13 pm

    the gruffalo

  • Reply
    michelle o'neill
    25th February 2016 at 1:23 pm

    Room on the Broom.

  • Reply
    Patricia Whittaker
    25th February 2016 at 1:29 pm

    I have always liked Tabby McTat

  • Reply
    Frances Lauder
    25th February 2016 at 1:45 pm

    Snail and the whale 🙂

  • Reply
    aaron broad
    25th February 2016 at 2:56 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Margaret Clarkson
    25th February 2016 at 3:00 pm

    A Squash and a Squeeze

  • Reply
    25th February 2016 at 3:35 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Paula Readings
    25th February 2016 at 3:38 pm

    Spinderella, funny film.

  • Reply
    Laura henney
    25th February 2016 at 4:45 pm

    We like charlie cooks favourite book, I love the way how they all link up.

  • Reply
    laura stewart
    25th February 2016 at 7:07 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Susan Sargent
    25th February 2016 at 7:35 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Kathryn haydock
    25th February 2016 at 7:52 pm

    We have a bit of a thing for ‘Hippo has a hat’ at the moment xxxx

  • Reply
    claire woods
    25th February 2016 at 8:49 pm

    Monkey Puzzle

  • Reply
    25th February 2016 at 9:44 pm

    Tranasouras Drip

  • Reply
    Elizabeth Martinez
    25th February 2016 at 9:59 pm

    The Snail and The Whale

  • Reply
    Angela McDonald
    25th February 2016 at 11:51 pm

    Hairy Maclairy from Donaldson’s Dairy! I adored that book!

  • Reply
    Maggi L
    26th February 2016 at 3:42 am

    We like ‘Stick Man’, great story!

  • Reply
    Ray Dodds
    26th February 2016 at 6:18 am

    Must be the gruffalo

  • Reply
    Sadiyya maryam
    26th February 2016 at 10:55 am

    My daughter loves What the Ladybird Heard Next.

  • Reply
    Annabel Greaves
    26th February 2016 at 11:38 am

    My kids love The Gruffalo xx

  • Reply
    26th February 2016 at 6:29 pm

    Tyrannosaurus Drip, little man loves dino’s

  • Reply
    Sarah Parkin
    26th February 2016 at 7:03 pm

    What the Ladybird Heard is our favourite – kids love finding the ladybird & joining in with animal noises as we read 🙂

  • Reply
    Rebecca Phillips
    26th February 2016 at 9:27 pm

    We love Monkey Puzzle!

  • Reply
    Karen hutchinson
    26th February 2016 at 10:47 pm

    I love the gruffalo but my son would probably pick zog or super worm

  • Reply
    Leah Wheatley
    27th February 2016 at 7:33 am

    The Gruffalo is a firm favourite

  • Reply
    Rebecca Duncan
    27th February 2016 at 7:42 am

    We like stick man 😀

  • Reply
    Linda Ford
    27th February 2016 at 9:08 am

    Charlie cooks favourite book, room on a broom and what the ladybird heard x

  • Reply
    Kim Neville
    27th February 2016 at 9:24 am

    My son loves the Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Emma F
    27th February 2016 at 9:41 am

    Room on a broom

  • Reply
    Ashleigh Allan
    27th February 2016 at 10:01 am

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Sarah Mackay
    27th February 2016 at 12:29 pm

    A squash and a sqeeze

  • Reply
    Stephanie Tsang
    27th February 2016 at 12:29 pm

    Room on the Broom is my favourite book by Julia Donaldson.

  • Reply
    Lorraine Tinsley
    27th February 2016 at 1:06 pm

    Room on A Broom

  • Reply
    helen tovell
    27th February 2016 at 1:14 pm

    Our favourite is Zog

  • Reply
    Kat Lucas
    27th February 2016 at 1:14 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    emma walters
    27th February 2016 at 2:02 pm

    my boys like the gruffalo’s child x

  • Reply
    Julie Henderson
    27th February 2016 at 2:07 pm

    the gruffalo of course 🙂

  • Reply
    Christine Caple
    27th February 2016 at 4:23 pm

    Room on the Broom

  • Reply
    Wendy Becker
    27th February 2016 at 4:40 pm

    The Gruffalo.

  • Reply
    Michelle Sykes
    27th February 2016 at 7:08 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Kim M
    27th February 2016 at 7:41 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    KAREN salisbury
    27th February 2016 at 8:44 pm

    gruffalo 100%

  • Reply
    Sophie Spiby
    27th February 2016 at 9:18 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Anthony Harrington
    27th February 2016 at 10:08 pm

    has to be The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Kerry Crowe
    27th February 2016 at 11:15 pm

    Room on the Broom! I love stories about witches and this is a great one 🙂

  • Reply
    Ruth Harwood
    28th February 2016 at 11:07 am

    The Gruffalo xx

  • Reply
    Lynsey Buchanan
    28th February 2016 at 12:20 pm

    Follow the Swallow

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    Jenna Parrington
    28th February 2016 at 12:32 pm

    Freddie and the Fairy 🙂

  • Reply
    Rhia P
    28th February 2016 at 1:30 pm

    Definitely the Gruffalo in our house, and of course the Gruffalo’s child 🙂

  • Reply
    Michelle Ferguson
    28th February 2016 at 1:36 pm

    I like room on a broom

  • Reply
    sharon martin
    28th February 2016 at 3:33 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Jo Carroll
    28th February 2016 at 6:34 pm

    The Gruffalo is an incredibly sweet tale of how the littlest heart can triumph in the big bad world. x

  • Reply
    Lucy Chester
    28th February 2016 at 8:44 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Rachel Heap
    28th February 2016 at 8:54 pm

    Stickman! my 3 year old daughter loves it just as much as me

  • Reply
    Keith Hunt
    28th February 2016 at 8:59 pm

    The Troll

  • Reply
    29th February 2016 at 3:37 am

    We love the gruffalo

  • Reply
    carol boffey
    29th February 2016 at 9:45 am

    The BFG

  • Reply
    jennifer thorpe
    29th February 2016 at 11:00 am

    the gruffalo

  • Reply
    Phyllis Ellett
    29th February 2016 at 11:04 am

    It has to be The Flying Bath.

  • Reply
    Johanne currie
    29th February 2016 at 11:28 am

    The bfg is awesome x

  • Reply
    Susan B
    29th February 2016 at 4:41 pm

    We love her Stick Man book so it is now our favourite.

  • Reply
    Sheri Darby
    29th February 2016 at 7:41 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Samantha Atherton
    29th February 2016 at 10:25 pm

    Ours is the singing mermaid

  • Reply
    Pamela Gossage
    29th February 2016 at 10:49 pm

    I love The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    jade Hewlett
    1st March 2016 at 7:23 am

    Monkey Puzzle

  • Reply
    kimberley ryan
    1st March 2016 at 10:29 am

    The Gruffalo is our favourite with Zog a very close second 🙂

  • Reply
    Kerry Kilmister
    1st March 2016 at 5:01 pm

    We love The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Adrian Bold
    1st March 2016 at 5:50 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Angie Poulding
    1st March 2016 at 6:40 pm

    Stick Man 🙂

  • Reply
    Laura Pritchard
    1st March 2016 at 7:02 pm

    We love The Snail and the Whale

  • Reply
    jessica cook
    1st March 2016 at 8:40 pm

    We love what the ladybird heard

  • Reply
    Patricia Avery
    1st March 2016 at 8:53 pm

    The Gruffalo 🙂

  • Reply
    Vicki Nicholls
    1st March 2016 at 8:56 pm

    We all love Superworm. My daughter dressed up as Superworm in fact for last World Book Day!

  • Reply
    Kat Allinson
    1st March 2016 at 9:00 pm

    What the Ladybird Heard 🙂

  • Reply
    Sarah Mcknight
    1st March 2016 at 9:44 pm

    Room on the Broom

  • Reply
    Jennifer Rhymer
    1st March 2016 at 9:51 pm

    My little girl loves Room on the Broom, she has that story every night at bedtime at the moment 🙂

  • Reply
    Cassandra Mayers
    1st March 2016 at 10:17 pm

    Mine is Foxes Socks and its my daughters fav to!

  • Reply
    eloise mccarthy
    1st March 2016 at 10:25 pm

    H loves the Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Lynda Sanderson
    1st March 2016 at 10:48 pm

    The Gruffalo is wonderful and can re-lived every time we go to the park or the woods.
    The illustrations are so perfect

  • Reply
    Jane Middleton
    1st March 2016 at 11:43 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Charmian Filewood
    2nd March 2016 at 12:42 am

    The Gruffalo, great for all ages

  • Reply
    Jean Vaughan
    2nd March 2016 at 8:08 am

    Impossible to decide. The granddaughter loves Room on the Broom and The Gruffalo equally and has done for the last 18 months 🙂

  • Reply
    Maria Hackett
    2nd March 2016 at 8:14 am

    me and my daughter loves Paper dolls. we made some paper dolls at home too

  • Reply
    Rebecca Howells (@PeanutHog)
    2nd March 2016 at 8:51 am

    She’s done so many good books. The Gruffalo is brill, but so too is What the Ladybird Heard and What the Ladybug Heard.

  • Reply
    Karen Laing
    2nd March 2016 at 8:59 am

    It has to be the Grufallo,my little grand-daughter Millie has the outfit,backpack,pencil case and goodness knows what else.She’s only just turned four and loves all books,it’s such a wonderful gift to give a child,the joy of reading x

  • Reply
    Lucy Carter
    2nd March 2016 at 11:09 am

    We love Room on the Broom

  • Reply
    Barbara Handley
    2nd March 2016 at 11:27 am

    Probably Tiddler, the storytelling fish!

  • Reply
    Victoria Prince
    2nd March 2016 at 11:53 am

    Our favourite is A Squash and a Squeeze 🙂 So many fab books to choose from though

  • Reply
    Natalie Crossan
    2nd March 2016 at 12:09 pm

    Room on the broom 🙂 We read it most nights xx

  • Reply
    o kirby
    2nd March 2016 at 12:43 pm

    Stick man – I choke up when I’m reading it!!

  • Reply
    jane greenfield
    2nd March 2016 at 1:48 pm

    the gruffalo

  • Reply
    Emma Fox
    2nd March 2016 at 2:55 pm

    My son loves Zog

  • Reply
    Leanne Bell
    2nd March 2016 at 2:58 pm

    Monkey Puzzle is our favourite book 🙂 x

  • Reply
    2nd March 2016 at 4:00 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Nicola Lynch
    2nd March 2016 at 5:00 pm

    That is a really hard question as we love so many of them. I think Room on the Broom is my all time favourite though.

  • Reply
    jackie beckett
    2nd March 2016 at 7:09 pm

    wind in the willows was my childhood favourite now reading it to my grandchildren

  • Reply
    Laura Tonks
    2nd March 2016 at 7:25 pm

    Stickman 😀

  • Reply
    Steven Beasley
    2nd March 2016 at 7:42 pm

    The Gruffalo

  • Reply
    Alix Smith
    2nd March 2016 at 7:47 pm

    My 2 little ones love One Ted Falls Out of Bed as a bedtime story!

  • Reply
    Caroline Bellamy
    2nd March 2016 at 8:58 pm

    Haven’t read them all but I like Room on a Broom

  • Reply
    Holly Neale
    2nd March 2016 at 9:00 pm

    The gruffalo

  • Reply
    Amanda Langley
    2nd March 2016 at 9:12 pm

    The Gruffalo. My daughter and I know it pretty much word for word!

  • Reply
    Rebecca Powell
    2nd March 2016 at 9:20 pm

    We love Room on the Broom

  • Reply
    Pam Francis Gregory
    2nd March 2016 at 9:48 pm

    Got to be The Gruffalo!

  • Reply
    Jessica steele
    2nd March 2016 at 10:05 pm

    Stick Man is one of the best, although we like most of her books

  • Reply
    Kimberly goldsmith
    2nd March 2016 at 10:08 pm

    The Grufflo is my favourite x

  • Reply
    karen watt
    3rd March 2016 at 7:42 am

    the gruffalo

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