Literary fun planned at popular festival

Ian MacMillan (right) who will present a Cartoon History of Here with renowned cartoonist Tony Husband.
Ian MacMillan (right) who will present a Cartoon History of Here with renowned cartoonist Tony Husband.

A host of events for people of all ages are lined up as a popular festival returns.

The Under The Dome Festival has a number of events for those who prefer a gentle read rather than bouncing music or the sounds of Punch and Judy or Salsa dancing.

One of the highlights will be radio presenter Ian MacMillan who will present a Cartoon History of Here with renowned cartoonist Tony Husband.

The show at the inflatable Dome on Tuesday, July 21, will mix comedy, cartoonery, poetry and improvisation with a Whitley Bay theme.

Ian is poet-in-residence for The Academy of Urbanism and Barnsley FC while Tony is Cartoonist in Residence at The Lowry and ‘legendary Private Eye cartoonist’ PR Weekly.

Ian said: “I can’t wait to hear the sound of the warm North Sea splashing gently on the shore just below the noise of laughter and joy that’s the hallmark of the Whitley Bay Under the Dome Festival.”

Other book related events include a series of Tale Spinning sessions for the Tyneside Tale Telling Festival by various groups including Gary Cordingley, Chris Bostock and Bookhappy.

On July 23, Kim Tserkezie – who played Penny Pocket in the hit CBeebies series Balamory – will be signing and reading from her first children’s book, ‘Toys for Tomorrow’ about young Millie, a wheelchair user who has a love for adventure and an amazing Grandad who helps her see how, with a little guidance, even the cheekiest little ones can channel their energy into something positive and wonderful.

The book is the first in a series entitled, “The Wheelie Wonderful Life of Millie Monroe” and Kim is now taking the time to talk to children about the book and her experiences of disability and how she became successful in her chosen career.

Kim said: “It’s always great to meet people of all ages who know me primarily from Balamory.

“The new book is really getting youngsters engaged and it’s great to see them getting engrossed in the story.

“The books are based on a young wheelchair-user, her little life and her little community, based on a little bit of my own experience. I’m hoping it’ll be something that children find fun and enjoy.”

The events are taking place in a number of locations including the Playhouse, Whitley Bay First Centre, Stephenson Railway Museum, The Lighthouse, the Spanish City Plaza and a 14m diameter inflatable dome.

The festival runs from July 18, to August 2, and tickets for the events are available via https://under-the-dome.org