In the run up to the launch, I visited 3 local schools, Spittal First School, Tweedmouth West First School, and Scremerston First School. I worked with over 350 children, each one making something to contribute towards making a model town of Berwick. The work they did was wonderful, what amazed me most was the variety of the work. When I asked them to make fishing boats, each one was completely different. There are some genuinely beautiful things, I think we have some very talented children and inspiring teachers in Berwick.
But at this stage I still had no idea how all of the models would work together, would they be too small in such a large hall? Would anybody even come to see it?
The next day was a sunny day. We put up the banner and the big lion sign, and opened the doors. Within minutes the hall was full of people, which was wonderful to see. I recognised lots of faces from the schools I'd visited, and they were so excited to their work.
This is one of the activity tables. The children drew some fantastic lions and Berwick houses.
By the end of the day we had sold out of everything! Alison ran around to a few local shops scooping up their stock. It is always hard to judge how many books you will need.
Thank you so much to all the teachers and children I met when I visited the schools, and thanks to everyone who came along to support us. Thanks to my friend and fellow illustrator Vanessa Cabban for taking lots of these photos for me.