HIGH ELBOWS IN BRADFORD!

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Apologies for the delay in writing this blog, but as everyone knows things have been a little strange and surreal over the last week or so! I’m still not sure how we managed to finish our week visiting four wonderful Delta Academy Trust schools in and around Bradford.

Perfect base at Hewenden Mill

We chose to stay at the scenic Hewenden Mill, located at Cullingworth just five minutes from historic Howarth, once home to the Bronte family. We had the entire place to ourselves and it turned out to be a fabulous retreat at the end of a busy day.

Monday started more than well with our old friends at Whetley Academy. Years 3 and 4 enjoyed our Mokee Joe presentation in the first part of the morning, and upper KS2 took in our Poppy Warrior presentation during the hour before lunch. Both audiences were a pleasure to present to and many pupils were keen to learn about all of our books, especially in Years 5 and 6, many already familiar with a good selection of them.

After a great book signing the next day we were on our way to Southmere Academy, the threat of school closure due to the virus closing in on us. No matter! We ploughed on with our Poppy Warrior presentation to around half of the expected size audience (many parents chose to keep their children at home) and all passed extremely well. Somehow the week managed to keep on going and similar successful presentations were carried out at Lower Fields Primary Academy and Greengates Academy.

In actual fact, it was such a long time since we’d visited Greengates (about 15 years ago and at the start of my author

       Lots of great books to read at Greengates Academy

career) that we decided to present a Mokee Joe performance. The next day the school closed! PHEW! Just made it! It was interesting to see so many copies of our Mokee Joe books on the ‘buying shelf’ in the Greengates Foyer. The books had been previously purchased by the school to sell on to pupils at a huge discount. I’m guessing (and hoping) that the books quickly disappeared after my presentation in time for the enforced school holiday! (See pic).

During our ‘Bradford Week’ we met up with some good friends of ours from the Delta Schools – Ms Stansfield and Mrs Truelove

Lots of Poppy Warrior fans at Lower Fields

from Whetley, Ms Binns from Southmere, Ms Gavin  from Lower Fields and Mr Gaunt from Greengates.  A ‘HUGE’ thank you to each of them for ‘putting up’ with an author visit amid such strange goings on re the virus and it’s effects on the daily routine. Still…it was great to see so much positivity in the school community and I lost count of the ‘high elbows’ with so many of our fans in the wake of not being able to shake hands or ‘fist punch’ anymore!

Kath and I are at home now in self-isolation. I’ve got a new book to get on with…lots to do around our new house…and I’m working on making one of my books available for home tutoring (KRUSCHMEISTER) along with an activity pack to enjoy. So lots to do! Whatever happens, we will be thinking of you all and feel confident that you will rally round to get things back to normal as quickly as possible. See you all again soon…and that’s a promise!

PJM

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