Children and young people are in for a treat as Oxford Literary Festival prepares to kick off on Saturday with an extensive programme of famous authors and fun events. Here are our top picks!

Michael Rosen, March 16, Sheldonian 10am. Ages: 4-7+ Featuring new releases and classics from his incredible back catalogue, join this national treasure for a morning of family entertainment, stories and poems. Alongside many old favourites, Rosen will be discussing new book, The Incredible Adventures of Gaston Le Dog, about a dog’s odyssey to return to a beautiful beach he remembers from years ago, the book Rosen dreamt of writing while recovering from Covid. BOOK HERE

Michael Rosen

Adventuremice with Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre, Saturday March 16, Exeter College: Lecture Theatre, 12pm. Age 5+ Discover their endearing series for early readers and meet their plucky hero Pedro who is rescued by the Adventuremice – a brave, determined team who keep all the Mouse Islands safe from harm. Learn how to draw Pedro, take part in a brilliant interactive storytelling and help Reeves and McIntyre invent wild and wonderful new islands. Fun for the whole family.  BOOK HERE

Reeve McIntyre Adventuremice

Dame Jacqueline Wilson, Sunday March 24, Sheldonian Theatre, 10am, Age 9-12. A morning with the much-loved author where you can discover how she started her writing career, how she creates some of her best-loved characters such as Tracy Beaker and Hetty Feather, and learn about her brand new book The Girl Who Wasn’t There, a story about siblings and friendship with a hint of ghostliness. BOOK HERE

Jacqueline Wilson

Actor, comedian and children’s author Ben Miller, Exeter College Lecture Theatre, Saturday, 16 March, 2pm. Age 8+ Introducing his brand-new series The Fairytale Diaries starring the not-so-clever Big, Bad Wolf, smart Little Red Riding Hood and the brave Three Little Pigs. Laughs guaranteed in this fun event for all the family. BOOK HERE

Ben Miller

A Series of Unfortunate Events, Lemony Snicket interviewed by Jack Meggitt-Phillips, Sunday, March 24, Department for Continuing Education: Lecture Theatre. 4pm. Age 8+ Join the internationally bestselling author to celebrate the 25th anniversary and new collector’s editions of A Series of Unfortunate Events. And enjoy a lively and thought-provoking discussion between Lemony Snicket himself and Jack Meggitt-Phillips, author of The Beast and the Bethany. BOOK HERE

Lemony Snickett

Unlock Your inner Astronaut with Kate Pankhurst introduced by Andrew Kensley on Sunday March 17, Department for Continuing Education: Lecture Theatre at 4pm. Age 6+ Learn all about space in this fact-packed event from the bestselling creator of the Fantastically Great Women series. From discovering what shooting stars are really made of and learning how to complete a spacewalk, to rocket-building lessons and space shuttle trips, Pankhurst’s event will involve some dressing up, lots of props and even a draw-along. BOOK HERE

Kate-Pankhurst-pic from

Join bestselling authors in Katie and Kevin Tsang in Dragon Force, Sunday, March 24, Lincoln College: Oakeshott Room, 12pm. Age 5-8 Welcome to Camp Claw where you can join Dragon Force. Imagine what your very own heartbonded dragon might look like, what secret power you”d have and help dream up a brand new dragon character. Plus readings and a Q&A where you can ask Katie and Kevin questions about dragons, books, writing, or whatever you like! BOOK HERE

Katie and Kevin Tsang. Credit Olivia McDermott

Join the You’re Dead to Me podcaster Greg Jenner in Totally Chaotic History: Ancient Egypt Gets Unruly on Saturday March 23, Oxford University Mathematical Institute: Lecture Theatre 1, at 10am. Age 8-12. Jenner’s whirlwind tour will bust myths, unravel mysteries and uncover mind-boggling truths about everything from Pharaohs and Egyptian gods to mummies and the pyramids. He brings ancient Egypt to life to demonstrate what it would’ve been like to live through this extraordinary era. Hold on tight for a hectic, hilarious and exciting event. BOOK HERE

Greg Jenner

One for young football fans: Kicking Back, Nedum Onuoha talks to Jerome Sale, Thursday March 21, Oxford University Mathematical Institute: Lecture Theatre, 6pm. The BBC football pundit and former Manchester City and Queens Park Rangers footballer talks about life on and off the pitch, including minority groups in football, how to approach the end of a professional sporting career and the importance of having an identity outside the game, held in partnership with Oxford United Football Club. BOOK HERE

Nedum Onohua

Oxford Literary Festival runs from March 16-24. More details here