Leading author visits two Tameside schools
Friday 13th January 2017 @ 12:59 by Adam Higgins
Dukinfield Hyde News

Leading author Tom McLaughlin dropped in at two Tameside schools to give pupils an insight into the life of a writer and an illustrator.

The author, who has written titles including Accidental Prime Minister, The Story Machine and The Diabolical Mr Tiddles, spoke openly about how he has overcome dyslexia to become a published author, when he visited both St Mary’s RC school in Dukinfield and Gee Cross Holy Trinity.

Katrina Cole, the literacy lead at Gee Cross Holy Trinity, said: “He’s absolutely amazing. He is so lively, so energetic and so inspirational for the children.

“He brought his books, he read stories to the children, including a fantastic new book ‘Up, Up and Away’.

“He then switched his workshop and the next minute he was turning simple shapes like circles, triangles and squares into animals.

“He spoke to the children about how we didn’t find his talent until he was older so he didn’t know he could draw until he was 12 years old, and what a powerful message that is for our children,” Mrs Cole explained.

Tom was equally delighted with the reception he got from the youngsters.

“It’s fantastic and it’s great to come in and read stories,” he revealed.

“I spend so much of my time at home and in front of the computer or the drawing board, so coming out occasionally and reading kids stories is what it’s all about and you can sometimes forget that when you are up to your eyes in deadlines.”

Several pupils spoke about how much they had enjoyed the visit, including Archie in Year 4, who is keen to have some of his own work published in the future.

“I’ve been writing my own comics at home and when he (Tom) was talking about the comic strips, it inspired me and I want to write my own books,” he said.

Nine-year-old Samuel Gregory agreed.

“He gave us illustration tips and good ideas for stories,” he said, before adding he wants to become a billionaire author so he can buy a jet pack!


By Matt Hewitt