Children’s author Nick Butterworth to speak at Stratford library

Nick Butterworth

Nick Butterworth - Credit: Archant

The colourful and creative worlds of some of the nation’s best-loved children’s authors will be coming to Stratford library this half term as part of Discover Children’s Story Centre’s takeover.

The charity, in High Street, Stratford, will be bringing its love of literature to The Grove, just a few minutes’ walk away, for a week of storytelling fun.

Parents of small children may be familiar with some of the writers and illustrators taking part, including Nick Butterworth, author of the Percy the Park Keeper and Q Pootle 5 series.

“I’ve been involved with Discover for a few years now,” he said.

“When they invited me to be part of the takeover I had to say yes.”

Nick’s first book was published in 1981 and since then he has gone on to sell more than 15 million copies.

“I had no idea when I did the first book that it would be a success,” he said.

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Nick, who was a fan of Beatrix Potter’s books as a child, was originally a graphic designer before turning his hand to illustration when his children were young.

“I decided the only way I could control what I illustrated was to write the story too,” he said.

As part of the takeover, Nick will be presenting an interactive show with drawing, stories and a look at how the aliens of Q Pootle 5 went from the pages of a picture book to a CBeebies cartoon.

“My son Ben, who’s a producer, saw it on the shelf and thought it would be good as an animation,” Nick said.

“We set up our own production company and have made 52 episodes, and it’s been aired in 70 countries.”

And despite the success of the show, Nick is keen to emphasise the importance of reading with young children.

“I think it’s so important to read books, especially as a lot of children watch TV or use tablets,” he said.

“I feel very strongly about parents making time to share books with their children.

“It fosters literacy, but it also builds strong family relationships – I want to encourage all parents to take advantage of this beautifully simple activity.”

Nick Butterworth will be speaking at the Discover Stratford Library Takeover at 2pm on Monday, October 24. For more information or to book visit discover.org.uk