Welcome to NCBF Gala Day 2013

2013 marks the 30th anniversary of the Northern Children’s Book Festival, the largest annual reading celebration for young people in Europe. In 1983 a group of librarians decided to hold a two-day festival of children’s authors. Since then the Festival has grown into a two-week celebration of books and reading with authors and illustrators meeting children in schools and libraries across the North East. A lot has changed in 30 years but NCBF is still organised and run by all the public libraries between the Tees and the Tweed, with the express aim of connecting children with some of the UK’s top writers and passing on the enjoyment of reading for pleasure.

Gala Day is a chance for all the family to take part in the fun. Our writers and illustrators will be providing a variety of entertaining sessions for different ages. In addition to the usual array of craft activity stalls provided by the North East’s library services, this year there will be storytelling sessions from Creaky Knee stories, Seven Stories and local storyteller Don White.

This year’s event will be held at Woodhorn Museum. For more than 80 years Woodhorn was a coal mine and has been a museum since 1989. Travel to the museum on board the Woodhorn Narrow Gauge Railway, a historic colliery locomotive which will run from the Queen Elizabeth II Country Park car park straight to Woodhorn Museum throughout Gala Day. More information at woodhornnarrowgaugerailway.weebly.com

Waterstones will have a pop up bookshop at the festival where you can buy copies of the books and have them signed by the writers and illustrators featuring at the festival. Take a break in the museum café or wander through Coal Town; Woodhorn's interactive, permanent exhibition where through the eyes of the Ashington community, you’ll discover the true story of coal mining in Northumberland.

If you love children’s books and literature or just want a fantastic family day out then come and join the party.

NCBF is recruiting new Trustees to take it into a new and exciting phase. If you are interested in shaping the future of this unique festival follow this link for more information.


Northern Children’s Book Festival is organised by the library services of Stockton-on-Tees, Darlington, Durham, Gateshead, Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Newcastle, North Tyneside, Northumberland, Redcar and Cleveland, South Tyneside and Sunderland. Northern Children’s Book Festival is a registered charity number 1013065.