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Children's literary festival to be part of Croydon Heritage make-up

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PARK Hill Park will host a four day literary festival for Croydon schoolchildren as part of the borough's Heritage Festival this summer.

The Flower Fairy Festival, inspired by the books of Croydon author Cicely Mary Barker, will aim to teach children about literature, gardening and science.

The free event, planned for June 20-21 and 27-28, coincides with what would have been Barker's 120th birthday.

A professional story teller from Penguin publishers will be joined by actors and writers at the festival to bring the tales to life.

There will be beekeepers, Indian dancers and gardeners on hand to teach and entertain, and there will even be a specially brewed Flower Fairy beer for parents.

The park will be transformed into a fairy world for the two weekends with a Fairy Hall next to the water tower.

The festival, aimed at primary school children, has been organised by the Friends of Park Hill Park & Recreation Ground.

The team is hoping for £4,000 of council funding to host the event, but organiser Josie Kiss said most of this is just for portable toilets.

Ms Kiss said: "It will be an imaginative few days with art projects and storytelling.

"We are trying to put the fun back into reading books. Books make the imagination work so much harder than a PlayStation.

"There will be lots of running around. A lot of children from Croydon live in flats with no gardens and we want them to experience nature and books."

Ms Kiss said every fairy in the books was based on a Croydon child, and the festival hopes to bring the stories home.

More on the heritage festival - page 36.

Children's literary festival to be part of Croydon Heritage make-up


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