Tucked away in Pembroke Street, The Story Museum is a hidden gem of Oxford!
As you go in, the welcome from staff is warm and friendly. The bookshop is small, but full of treasures, many chosen to reflect the exhibitions current in the museum.
Having gone through the yellow door, I climbed the stairs, passing Alice on the way and decided to start with the John Burningham exhibition.
'Happy Birthday, Mr Burningham' celebrates the 80th birthday of one of our best loved illustrators and is a lovely bright space with plenty of things to see and do.
The exhibition displays many pieces of work from his books, including one of my favourites, 'Mr Gumpy's Outing'. You can re-enact the story in the boat if you like!
The Changing Room is a fantastic space- but one that I felt I needed a child to enjoy! It was full of costumes and a huge throne which spoke as children sat on it! The little ones in there were having such a good time- it was a joy to watch!
Next, I wandered round the 'Story Rooms' which offer different stories from around the world. Each was a great space, designed to tempt you to curl up and listen to or share a good story. Clever use of colour and light made each space distinctive and appealing in different ways so there was something for everyone!
Continuing upstairs, I passed the tumbling cards on my way to the top floor exhibitions.
The table is set and ready for the tea party as you enter the March Hare's house. At the table you can try writing riddles...
But, for me, the magic really started when I opened the wardrobe door, pushed aside the fur coats and stepped into the eternal winter of Narnia! That was something really special and I took a few moments to watch the faces of other people coming through the doors- and I know I wasn't the only one to feel like this!
Just round the corner was Mr Badger's study and I enjoyed sitting in front of his fire and listening to the story!
Lastly, I visited 'Animal- a safari through stories'. Armed with my tube for listening to stories, I 'explored my wild side', enjoying many of my favourite animal stories and marvelling at the scenes that had been created- The River Singers, The Last Wild, Island, The Wolf Wilder and Varjak Paw amongst others.
There's also a Film Den and Time for Bed to explore and enjoy!
A great day out, the Story Museum has much to offer, particularly if you have children with you to share the magic!