We’re Bursting Into Verse this Summer

Wednesday 31 July – Sunday 1 SEPTEMBER

Join us this summer to explore the astonishing world of our imaginations as we search for hidden poems in stories, songs and tales. During the holidays we’ll be sharing Roald Dahl’s Revolting Rhymes, exploring Michael Rosen’s Poems for the Very Young and counting Janet and Allan Ahlberg’s Each Peach Pear Plum.

AGED 0 – 3? Join our Incy Wincy Rhymers

AGED 3 – 8? Explore with the Storyhunters

The Reader Storybarn named ‘Best for Learning’ in public vote

The Storybarn has been named Best for Learning in the 2019 Hoop Awards – over 100,000 public votes were cast in the awards which aim to shine a light on the UK’s favourite kids activities and celebrate the people and organisations that go above and beyond to entertain, educate and inspire children.

Run by national charity, The Reader, that brings people together and books to life, the Storybarn is an imaginative play space dedicated to sharing the delights of reading with young children and their families in Liverpool’s Calderstones Park.

Over the last twelve months, more than 3,300 children from 111 schools have visited the Storybarn to take part in imaginative literature-based adventures, while nearly 9,000 parents and children have enjoyed the popular Incy Wincy Rhymer and Storyhunter sessions.

The team also hosted 23 fun days with charity partners to give families who have never had an opportunity to attend the Storybarn and might not normally be able to, an opportunity to enjoy the experience without worrying about the cost.

Additionally, 7,000 people embarked on an interactive storytelling adventure at The Storybarn’s Treasure Island over summer, our pop up experience at Liverpool ONE. Throughout the year, there were nearly 100 birthday celebrations and more than 1,600 children visited Father Christmas’s grotto in December. Revenues generated by the Storybarn’s commercial products contribute to supporting The Reader’s charitable work with communities.

Andrea, who recently visited with her family, said: What an amazing place, great concept, really encouraging children to open their minds and imaginations. In a society obsessed with all thing tech, it was so lovely to be in a place that took it all back to the basics of childhood. Just magical.”

Annie Lord, The Reader’s Storybarn Manager said: “The whole team is thrilled to hear that we are the winners of this Hoop Award. We want to say a huge thank you to all the families that have made the year so special for us, and indeed to everyone who voted for us.”

Incy Wincy Rhymer sessions for families with children from 0-3 and Storyhunter sessions for children up to eight run every weekend at The Storybarn. For ticket details and availability visit www.thestorybarn.org.uk/booktickets

Seeds of Discovery

Wednesday 10 – Sunday 21 April

Calderstones is bursting into bloom with the colours of Spring and we need your help to create the brand-new Storybarn Garden aboard the good ship Hispaniola!

We’ll be sharing some of our favourite springtime stories, planting seeds and looking for our friends from the natural world as they wake up from hibernation!

Whether you’re one of our younger Incy Wincy Rhymers or an older Storyhunter, there’s sure to be fun for the whole family this Easter.

Some of the stories we’ll be sharing:

National Storytelling Week Celebration

“What about a story?” said Christopher Robin.
What about a story?” I said.
“Could you very sweetly tell Winnie-the-Pooh one?”
“I suppose I could,” I said.
From Winnie-the-Pooh by A. A. Milne

Join us to celebrate National Storytelling Week with some extra-special sessions dedicated to A. A. Milne’s brilliant stories and poems. During our Incy Wincy Rhymer sessions, our younger visitors could enjoy searching for Eeyore’s tail at The House at Pooh Corner, while Storyhunters aged 3 to 8 might go on an adventure to find a Heffalump or a Woozle.

Whatever we discover, we’re sure that there will be fun for all the family when our imaginations transform The Storybarn into The Hundred Acre Wood.

World Nursery Rhyme Week

In celebration of World Nursery Rhyme Week we’re holding a whole week of Incy Wincy Rhymers
– sessions are carefully crafted for you and your little ones. We’ll explore classic stories, family
favourites and nursery rhymes through storytelling and sing-a-longs.

Come along and enjoy free play, creative exploration and take-home crafts. Free tea or coffee
included for accompanying adults.

Half-Term Halloween

‘In fairy-tales, witches always wear silly black hats and black cloaks, and they ride on broomsticks. But this is not a fairy-tale. This is about REAL WITCHES. Listen very carefully…’
Roald Dahl, The Witches

Tip-toe through The Storybarn’s creaky doors and embark on a haunted story-telling adventure. What will you find? It might be a petrifying pumpkin enjoying Meg and Mog, a ghastly ghoul reciting Mildred’s adventures from The Worst Witch or a villainous vampire exploring The Dark with Laszlo.

Whatever we discover, there will be more fun than frights in our Halloween Half-Term sessions for the whole family. Join us for Incy Wincy Rhymers sessions for newborn to three or The Storyhunters for children aged three to eight.

10am 12noon 2pm
Tuesday 23 October Incy Wincy Rhymers The Storyhunters The Storyhunters
Wednesday 24 October Incy Wincy Rhymers The Storyhunters The Storyhunters
Thursday 25 October CLOSED CLOSED CLOSED
Friday 26 October Incy Wincy Rhymers Incy Wincy Rhymers (11.30am) Incy Wincy Rhymers
Saturday 27 October Incy Wincy Rhymers CLOSED The Storyhunters
Sunday 28 October Incy Wincy Rhymers The Storyhunters The Storyhunters

Treasure Island sets sail from Liverpool ONE

Credit: Liverpool ONE

After an incredible five months berthed on Paradise Street, on Sunday 2 September, we wished the Hispaniola and its crew of Story Shipmates ‘bon voyage!’ as they set off for a new adventure on the wide open seas!

We have absolutely loved bringing a touch of The Storybarn magic to Liverpool ONE during our pop-up Treasure Island adventure – and it’s been a pleasure to welcome more than 6,800 pirate friends to our castaway island, underwater grotto and, of course, our very own pirate ship.

Huge thanks to Liverpool ONE for hosting our adventure and Make Liverpool for helping us build an incredible Treasure Island that inspired the imaginations of Shipmates from across Liverpool – and beyond!

It was a magical experience for our 20-month-old. He loved steering the ship and searching for treasure. We especially loved the two stories that were read beautifully and really held the attention of each child there. Loved the dressing up box!

– Treasure Island parent

“Me and my son have been to Treasure Island several times now.  He is nine and has autism. Treasure Island is his favourite place at the moment.  The staff are so attentive to him and very friendly.  The visits have helped him to engage more with reading and fired his imagination.”

– Treasure Island parent

During its stay in Liverpool, the Hispaniola team welcomed school visitors from St. Vincent  de Paul Catholic Primary School, Wavertree C of E Primary School and two groups from LIPA Primary School for free Shared Reading fun.

Waverton House, Litherland Moss, Honey Pot Day Nursery in Aigburth, Auckland House and more nurseries from across Liverpool were invited to set sail for reading adventures too, and we also hosted a group of children from Liverpool ONE’s chosen charity KIND, which supports those in most need.

Ahoy me hearties!

Storytime adventures continue at The Storybarn…

We may have closed the book on Treasure Island at Liverpool ONE but the storytime fun and games continue at The Storybarn in Calderstones Park. You’ll find the same warm welcome and that bit of magic at our Incy Wincy Rhymer and Storyhunter sessions every single week.