WHERE can you learn to draw an exploding cloud cat, help create a brand-new mythical race, draw a fantasy map, meet a woman who lives in a dustbin, and come face-to-face with the Gruffalo?

The answer, of course, is the IW Story Festival.

Organisers have confirmed that a live festival will go ahead this February half term, on February 25 and 26, and tickets are now on sale from the festival’s venue, Quay Arts.

Star of the show is Gruffalo illustrator Axel Scheffler.

Isle of Wight County Press: Axel Scheffler is coming to the Isle of Wight Story Festival.

Ian Whitmore, of Quay Arts, said: "There are so many wonderful authors and events programmed, and we can't wait to have the building filled with families enjoying themselves, getting inspired and feeding their imaginations in our fully accessible venue.”

Elspeth Giddens, festival organiser, said: “We are so delighted to put on a live festival again this year, and we’re so excited about the programme we’ve put together.

“We’ve got world-famous author and illustrator Axel Scheffler; live theatre; award-winning national and local writers; and lots of hands-on creative activities for children and families to enjoy.

“For two years, opportunities for children have been severely limited – they have missed out on so much – which is why we’re so excited to be back with a live event.”

In 2021, due to covid restrictions, the IW Story Festival ran a very successful online event, attracting 2,853 views, not just from the Isle of Wight but from the rest of the UK and places as far-flung as the Netherlands, Trinidad and Tobago and the USA.

For more information about the festival, visit www.iwstoryfestival.com.