Children’s Arts Festival Programme

A weekend of arts for children. A two day festival, where kids can try out arts activities with professional artists. A fabulous way to round off half term.

A wide range of fun workshops and activities for kids, including theatre, music, drama, storytelling and crafts. Outdoor and indoor. Day passes and weekend passes.

Festival Pass in Advance £12 per day or £16 per Whole Weekend on the door £13

Buy Tickets

Pay once for access to all workshops and performances. Let your children try their hand at the array of arts activities we have on offer – storytelling, theatre, art, dance, poetry, writing or singing – two whole days of fun. Bring your friends and a picnic!

All Children to be accompanied by an adult


Saturday, 10 – 12:

“Wildlife fires the imagination” – An fun outdoor ‘Wild Writing’ workshop with Nicola Chester

Suitable for ages 8-14 years.

Nicola is a local naturalist, published author and school librarian. Passionate about wildlife, writing and words, Nicola believes contact with nature and wildlife fires the imagination and can enliven anyone’s writing in any situation. 

In this workshop, children can explore the early Summer wildlife around the Croft field and towards the Kennet & Avon canal, returning to base to have some fun with writing and see what the walk has inspired.

Bring wellies if wet, we’ll go out in all but the worst weather (in which case, we can work with ‘found’ objects provided). Bring a notebook and something to write with. Bring binoculars if you have them, and a water bottle and snack if you like.









Saturday, 10-11:

Fun and vibrant storytelling and interactive performance workshops with marvellous ‘Merry-Go-Round’

hungrycat‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ Interactive Storytelling Workshop for 2-5 year olds

The little caterpillar is having a very busy week, eating all the food in the garden. But when it builds a small house and falls asleep something very magical happens….

Join Amanda from Merry-go-Round Storytelling as she brings this classic story to life. Children will help her recreate this much-loved story with music, movement and lots of imaginative fun!

Children must be accompanied by an adult. Older siblings welcome.


bearhunt‘We’re going on a Bear Hunt’ Interactive Storytelling Workshop for 2-5 year olds

Come and be part of our exciting storytelling adventure with Amanda from Merry-go-Round Storytelling as we swish and swash, splish and splash and tiptoe into the cave to catch a bear!

Children will help Amanda recreate this much-loved story with music, movement and lots of imaginative fun!

Children must be accompanied by an adult. Older siblings welcome.

Saturday, 12 – 1:

Children’s author & performer AF Harrold presents his latest literary creations – bring your imagination and find out what fun words can be. 

Suitable for ages 6+

The author and poet presents his latest series Greta Zargo, which stars a schoolgirl turned detective. He might also talk about the fabulous will also talk about the Fizzlebert Stump series, The Imaginary and The Song from Somewhere Else. Bring your imagination and find out what fun words can be.





Saturday drop-in anytime from 10 – 12 and 1 – 3

‘Think of a Wonderful Thought’ creative workshop with Gemma Kirby. 

Create a Masterpiece in Mixed Media Art workshops based on Disney’s ‘Think of a Wonderful Thought’

Taking inspiration from Disney’s Peter Pan where some of the wonderful thoughts were a mermaid lagoon under a magic moon, toys at Christmas, sleigh bells, snow and hiding in a pirate’s cave…Gemma will encourage children to use a range of paper, card and mixed media including paints, pastels and collage cut-outs to create their image. Children will take their artwork home to display and look at again when they want to be reminded of their ‘wonderful thought’. ‘


Saturday (Musical Theatre Workshop 1 – 1:30pm; Street Dance 3-3:30pm)

Sway Dance Musical Theatre & Street Dance Workshops

Suitable ages 5+

Sway other 1_920x550

Pick up some new moves and top tricks with Sway Dance’s street dance and musical theatre workshops. Impress your friends with some cool dance moves! We recommend bringing a water bottle with you.

Saturday, 2:45 – 3:45

3 2 1 Blast Off! An Interactive Family Event that is Out of this World! Interactive Performance workshops with Merry-Go-Round Storytelling

For families of children aged 7 and Under









Calling all Aliens, Astronauts, Adventurers and Superheroes!!

Come dressed as your favourite character and be part of this exciting and energetic event with Amanda from Merry-go-Round Storytelling. There will be songs, dancing, storytelling and lots of interactive fun as we travel into space and get back in time for tea! 


Sunday, 10-12.30 

Mask-Making with Merry-Go-Round. Action packed creative workshop combining mask-making, junk modelling, drama and performance with ‘Merry Go Round’ 


‘The Lion King’ mask making and performance workshop

For ages 8-12 years

Join Amanda from Merry-go-Round Storytelling and make amazing masks of your favourite animals from the hit show. 

Explore how to use them through drama games and learn a routine to perform to family and friends at the end of the workshop.

Please bring a drink and a snack and wear comfortable clothes. 

Sunday, 10-12

‘Underwater Big Picture’ with Simon Jardine

Suitable for all ages

seajardineHelp create a big underwater picture with Simon Jardine.

Let your imagination swim free designing a fish, a monster or anything you can think of to contribute to a wonderful work of art!


Sunday, 11:30 

Rhubarb Theatre: ‘The Big Dippers’ show

big-dippers-pa-a4-724x1024.jpgFresh from their performance at The Watermill, The Rhubarb Theatre Company join us for slapstick interactive theatre with ‘The Big Dippers’ and other crazy characters

Rhubarb Theatre: ‘The Big Dippers’ show

Suitable for ages 5+

Sun, sand, seagulls and a magical beach hut? This is no ordinary day at the seaside…

Our vivacious Victorian paddlers are all at sea for some slapstick adventure and summertime fun. See Rhubarb’s bathing buddies take the plunge, sort their swimwear, practice some strokes and try to avoid the sharks! Making a big splash, they’ll surf the waves of adventure and dive deep into hi-jinks and hilarity.

Grab your bucket and spade and hold onto your swim-hats as The Big Dippers set off on their splendid seaside adventures!




Sunday 12 – 12:30

things findThings You Find in a Poet’s Beard: Silly & Peculiar poems with AF Harrold

Children’s author and poet, AF Harrold, (who has a very big beard) will be performing his poetry (and probably leaping around a bit) which can be silly, serious or just peculiar.

Things You Find in a Poet’s Beard is a collection of poems that have been shouted at children at schools, bookshops and festivals across the country. Perhaps you’ll want to annoy your family by reading them out; perhaps you’ll want to chuckle at them under the covers with a torch; perhaps you’ll want to stare at the drawings drawn by Mr Chris Riddell; or maybe you’ll want to stand up and shout them in assembly to capture the spirit of A.F. Harrold himself.

Books will be available to be signed and bought at this event. (Printed using Dyslexie font – the typeface for readers with dyslexia.)

Sunday, 2 – 4

junkmodJunk modelling with Merry-Go-Round

Junk!! A Junk Modelling and Creative Storytelling Workshop for 5-8 year olds

This workshop brings together two things that young children love – junk modelling and stories. 

We will be making junk models then using them to create a story for family and friends to watch at the end. This 2 hour workshop with Amanda from Merry-go-Round Storytelling, will also include drama games to ignite the children’s imaginations!

Please bring old clean packets or cartons which are heading to the recycling bin and any old craft bits and bobs which are going the same way so we can re-use them and turn them into something amazing!! 

Sunday (Musical Theatre Workshop 2:30 -3; Street Dance Workshop 3:30-4)

Sway other 1_920x550

Pick up some new moves and top tricks with Sway Dance’s street dance and musical theatre workshops. Impress your friends with some cool dance moves! We recommend bringing a water bottle with you.

Sunday, 3pm

Family Songbook Session with kids author & musician Nick Cope

Suitable for all ages 


Monkeys, bears, socks and mud – this man sings about all the things children love! If you haven’t seen singer/songwriter/illustrator/author/all-round kids entertainment guru, Nick Cope, in action yet, you’re missing out. But panic not, he’ll be performing for us on the Sunday where he’ll be keeping the kids (and their grown-ups) singing and laughing with his acoustic folk-rock ditties inspired by the day-to-day of family life.

‘Our family’s favourite singer / songwriter’ Lucy Porter, writer & comedian

‘This really is a show that is full of enjoyment for all ages, and not to be missed. We will definitely go again.’ Primary Times

CDs and books will be available to buy at this event

Sunday, 3-3:30

Rhubarb Theatre: ‘The Three Suitcases’ show


Suitable for ages 5+

Where is the train? Will it arrive?  As time tick-tocks onwards our 3 accidental companions become more and more playful, passing the time in amusing and joyful ways – who knows what might happen next?

Full of mime, physical theatre, music and fun, this is a silly and sweet Rhubarb street-treat for all the family!



On Both Days:

Books swap table & activity sheet stations, Face painting, Photo Booth, Ice-cream*, Pizza Tent*

*extra charge