Visitor figures for Tiger exhibition top 10,000

Published: Wed 30th March, 2022

The press release below was issued by Leicestershire County Council.

Talented young writers have been showcasing their storytelling and illustration skills in a competition inspired by Charnwood Museum’s hugely popular exhibition, The Tiger Who Came to Tea.

The exhibition opened at the start of the year and closed on 5th March – during which time it attracted a record-breaking audience of almost 10,000 visitors.

Based on Judith Kerr’s much-loved children’s book,  the exhibition featured facsimiles of the original illustrations, as well as a reproduction of Sophie’s kitchen, where young visitors could sit down to tea with a 4ft cuddly tiger, a reading area, dressing up, puzzles, games and lots more Tiger-related activities.

The children’s story competition invited budding young writers to send in their own short stories and illustrations inspired by the exhibition – and 24 entries were received across the three categories.

The under-sevens category was jointly won by Nell Boulton (five) with her story, Sophie’s Visit, and Isabelle Carlile (six) with Olivia and the Bad Dream.

Nine-year-old Tillie McClelland won the seven-11 category with The Llama Who Came to Lunch and there were joint winners in the 12-16 category - Urban Townes (12) with The Tiger Strikes Again and Sophie Worth (14), with The Tiger at the Party.

The winners will now be invited to Charnwood Museum to receive their prizes. They will also be able to take a look at their prize-winning stories and illustrations, which are now on display at the museum, along with many of the other entries.

Councillor Christine Radford, Leicestershire County Council's cabinet member for heritage, leisure and arts, said: "The attendance figures show that the Tiger Who Came to Tea was one of the most popular exhibitions ever held at Charnwood Museum.

"The number and high standard of entries received for the story writing competition again illustrates that this wonderful story is still playing its part in inspiring a new generation of readers, more than 50 years after it was written."

Councillor Jenny Bokor, lead member for Loughborough at Charnwood Borough Council, said: "The Tiger Who Came to Tea has been a wonderful exhibition and the number of visitors to Charnwood Museum has shown that they have truly taken it to their hearts.

"A huge congratulations to the winners of the writing competition and thank you to all the children who entered. It is fantastic to know that we have so many creative and talented children in Charnwood. Well done to you all."

The exhibition was originated by Seven Stories, the National Centre for Children’s Books.

Charnwood Museum is open Wednesday to Saturday, 10am to 3pm. More information is available on the Charnwood Museum website at www.charnwoodmuseum.co.uk.