A celebration with special guests R. W. Alley, Hugh Bonneville and Karen Jankel.
This is an online event transmitted on The British Library platform. Shortly before the event ticket bookers will be sent a link to view the event, either live or within 48 hours of the start time on catch up.
Please note, this event was recently advertised as taking place in the British Library Theatre. Due to changes to speakers’ travel plans, the event will now be online only. Ticket holders for the Theatre will be contacted.
Paddington Bear has been one of the most enduringly popular characters in children’s fiction since Michael Bond first introduced him to readers in 1958, with at least 35 million books sold in 40 languages worldwide and two hit films. A migrant taken in by the kind Brown family, he stays upbeat and determined through innumerable adventures and scrapes, always being helpful and compassionate himself.
Join us for an evening of conversation celebrating Paddington and his extraordinary journey with guests including actor Hugh Bonneville, who plays Mr Brown in both films; the author’s daughter Karen Jankel; and illustrator R W Alley. Chaired by children’s literature expert Julia Eccleshare.*
This event is aimed at anyone aged 8+.
The event accompanies the British Library exhibition Paddington: The Story of a Bear, open in the PACCAR Gallery until 31 October.
R. W. (Bob) Alley is an award-winning artist and illustrator based Rhode Island, USA. He has been illustrating the Paddington books since the 1990s, both in full colour and with delightful pen and ink line drawings.
Hugh Bonneville is an actor on screen and on stage who is well known for playing Mr Brown in in the films Paddington and Paddington 2. Born in Paddington, London, he joined the National Theatre and then the Royal Shakespeare Company, going on to have award-winning lead roles in many much loved TV shows, including Downton Abbey, Twenty Twelve and W1A, and numerous films, among them Notting Hill, Iris and French Film.
Julia Eccleshare (chair) is a writer, broadcaster and lecturer. She was the Guardian's children's books editor until 2016 having previously worked as an editor for Penguin imprint, Puffin. She has chaired or served on many book award panels including the Whitbread Children;s Book Award, Nestlé Smarties Book Prize the Branford Boase Award and the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize. Julia is also she was Head of Policy and Advocacy for Public Lending Right.
Karen Jankel is the daughter of Paddington’s creator the author Michael Bond, and Brenda Bond. Born just before the first publication of A Bear Called Paddington, she has grown up around the Bear and his amazing story. As Managing Director of Paddington and Company Limited for over thirty years, she worked closely on all associated projects, culminating in the first of the two Paddington films. Now retired, Karen continues to look after her father's legacy as a trustee of his literary estate.
*Hugh Bonneville appears subject to professional commitments.
Travel partner: Great Western Railway
The British Library is a charity. Your support helps us open up a world of knowledge and inspiration for everyone. Donate today.