Buzz Aldrin

Book Cover: Buzz Aldrin

No Dream Is Too High: Life Lessons From a Man Who Walked on the Moon

Beloved American hero Buzz Aldrin reflects on the wisdom, guiding principles, and irreverent anecdotes he's gathered through his event-filled life - both in outer space and on earth. No Dream Is Too High whittles down Buzz Aldrin's event-filled life into a short list of principles he values, each illustrated by fascinating anecdotes and memories, such as: Second comes right after first. NASA protocol should have meant he was first on the moon, but rules changed just before the mission. How he learned to be proud of being the second man on the moon. Look for opportunities, not obstacles. Buzz was rejected the first time he applied to be an astronaut. Failure is an opportunity to learn to do better. Always maintain your spirit of adventure. For his 80th birthday, Buzz went diving in the Galapagos and hitched a ride on a whale shark. He stays fit, energetic, and fascinated with life.

Mike Massimino

Book Cover: Mike Massimino

Spaceman: An Astronaut's Unlikely Journey to Unlock the Secrets of the Universe

'This terrific memoir... is utterly gripping' Mail on Sunday

‘Read this book and be inspired to reach for the impossible’ Brian Greene

Many children dream of becoming an astronaut when they grow up, but when a six-year-old Mike Massimino saw Neil Armstrong walk on the moon he knew what he wanted to do when he became an adult. But NASA rejected him; then when he applied again they turned him down because of his poor eyesight. For the next year he trained his eyes to work better and finally, at the third time of asking, NASA accepted him.

So began Massimino's 18-year career as an astronaut, and the extraordinary lengths he went to to get accepted was only the beginning. In this awe-inspiring memoir, he reveals the hard work, camaraderie and sheer guts involved in the life of an astronaut; he vividly describes what it is like to strap yourself into the Space Shuttle and blast off into space, or the sensation of walking in space, as he did when he completed a mission to service the Hubble telescope. He also talks movingly about the Columbia tragedy, and how it felt to step into the Space Shuttle again in the aftermath of that disaster.

Massimino was inspired by the film The Right Stuff, and this book is not only a tribute to those fellow astronauts he worked with, but also a stunning example of someone who had exactly those attributes himself.

Shane Warne

Book Cover: Shane Warne

No Spin: My Autobiography

My story, without the spin.

'It is one of the most honest books you will read by any sportsman and I can commend it to everybody' - Piers Morgan

From the start of his glittering career in 1992, to his official retirement from all formats of the game in 2013, Shane Warne has long desired to tell his incredible story without compromise. No Spin is that very story. It will offer a compelling intimate voice, true insight and a pitch-side seat to one of cricket’s finest eras, making this one of the ultimate must-have sports autobiographies.

Shane is not only one of the greatest living cricket legends: he is as close as the game has had since Botham to a maverick genius on the field and a true rebel spirit off it, who always gives audiences what they want. Despite being the talismanic thorn in England’s side for nearly two decades of regular Ashes defeats, he was also much loved in the UK where he played cricket for Hampshire. He’s also a much-admired figure in India and South Africa.

Alongside his mesmerising genius as a bowler, Shane has often been a controversial figure, and in this book he's talk with brutal honesty about some of the most challenging times in his life as a player. Honest, thoughtful, fearless and loved by millions, Shane is always his own man and this book is a testament to his brilliant career.

Eric Idle

Book Cover: Eric Idle

Always Look on the Bright Side of Life

'As funny, wicked, naughty, eye-popping and compulsively, joyously brilliant as the genius who wrote it' Stephen Fry

We know him best for his unforgettable roles on Monty Python - from the Flying Circus to The Meaning of Life. Now, Eric Idle reflects on the meaning of his own life in this entertaining memoir that takes us on a remarkable journey from his childhood in an austere boarding school through his successful career in comedy, television, theatre and film.

Coming of age as a writer and comedian during the Sixties and Seventies, Eric stumbled into the crossroads of the cultural revolution and found himself rubbing shoulders with the likes of George Harrison, David Bowie and Robin Williams, all of whom became lifelong friends. With anecdotes sprinkled throughout involving Mike Nichols, Mick Jagger, Steve Martin, Paul Simon and many more, as well as the Pythons themselves, Eric captures a time of tremendous creative output with equal parts hilarity and heart.

In Always Look on the Bright Side of Life, named after the song he wrote for Life of Brian which has since become the number-one song played at funerals in the UK, he shares the highlights of his life and career with the kind of offbeat humour that has delighted his audiences for five decades. This is a memoir chock-full of behind-the-scenes stories from a high-flying life featuring everyone from Princess Leia to Queen Elizabeth.

Rick Stein

Book Cover: Rick Stein

In conversation with Rick Stein

Guests enjoyed a fascinating and humorous talk from Rick Stein OBE. The event was held in partnership with Silverwood Events and was centred around Rick’s new book and television series, “The Road to Mexico”.

John Gillmore (Gilly) from BBC Radio Lancashire sat down with Rick to discuss not just his book but the many adventures he has had throughout his career as a restaurateur. Rick began his career at the Great Western in Paddington and then bought a nightclub in Padstow with his best friend where he opened a restaurant in the same building. Rick now runs many successful restaurants and businesses and has written over 20 cookery books, an autobiography and made over 30 programmes, including 12 cookery series.

Rick spoke with humour and passion and kept the audience enthralled with tales of him travelling around the world where he has been inspired by the love of family cooking and street food.

The event drew to a close with a lively Q & A session then Head of School, Emma Taylor, presented Rick with a thank you gift.

We would like to thank Jake and Elaine from Silverwood Events for organising the event, Gilly for a fantastic interview and, of course, Rick for giving up his time to travel to Westholme for such an entertaining evening.

The Hairy Bikers

Book Cover: The Hairy Bikers

Launching their new cook book

There was a rousing welcome in The Croston Theatre for Dave Myers and Si King, better known as the Hairy Bikers, as they sat down on the stage with Radio Lancashire presenter, John (Gilly) Gillmore for an evening of conversation, in conjunction with Silverwood Events.

The atmosphere was warm and intimate like a gathering of old friends. Gilly began the conversation with a trip down memory lane; Dave and Si talked about their childhoods and recounted hilarious stories of their youth and the influence of their families.

As they embarked on their careers, Dave and Si found themselves falling into the media industry by accident and would eventually meet whilst working on the same production. Their friendship was forged during an after work drink at the pub with the rest of the crew.

The tale of how they became the Hairy Bikers is one of luck and happy accident. They started with an idea involving food, travel and karma and found a team who were willing to take a chance on them.

They made the audience laugh out loud with funny anecdotes about the first cookery programme they made, which actually turned out to be a surprising success. The warmth and camaraderie was infectious and the witty banter between Dave and Si and their incredible stories kept the audience enthralled.

The move to become Hairy Dieters, which is how they have become known for the last series of books, stemmed from a rather harsh realisation that they both needed to change their lifestyles and waistlines. With a light-hearted approach they discovered another way to enjoy food and cooking. Their honesty and humour has helped the Hairy Dieters connect with so many ‘foodies’ and made their series of books and television travel cookery programmes a firm favourite.

The audience were thoroughly entertained and like the food the Hairy Bikers cook, they were left wanting more!

Thank you to Dave and Si for their wonderful visit and to Elaine and Jake from Silverwood Events once again for making the event possible.

Excerpt:

Launching their new cook book

There was a rousing welcome in The Croston Theatre for Dave Myers and Si King, better known as the Hairy Bikers, as they sat down on the stage with Radio Lancashire presenter, John (Gilly) Gillmore for an evening of conversation, in conjunction with Silverwood Events.

Cressida Cowell

Book Cover: Cressida Cowell

Cressida Cowell visits Westholme

This afternoon we were absolutely delighted to welcome children’s author, Cressida Cowell to Westholme. Cressida wrote the hugely popular ‘How to train Your Dragon’ book series and children from Junior School and local primary schools enjoyed listening to her speak about her brand new book, ‘The Wizards of Once’, which was published today.

Cressida talked about her love for books, the reasons behind her decision to start writing for children and how she is inspired by her own childhood in rural Sussex. The children had the opportunity to ask diverse and searching questions and enjoyed meeting Cressida as she signed each of their books and posed for photographs.

We want to thank Cressida for taking the time to visit us and Elaine and Jake from Silverwood Events for hosting such a wonderful afternoon.

Excerpt:

Cressida Cowell visits Westholme

This afternoon we were absolutely delighted to welcome children’s author, Cressida Cowell to Westholme. Cressida wrote the hugely popular ‘How to train Your Dragon’ book series and children from Junior School and local primary schools enjoyed listening to her speak about her brand new book, ‘The Wizards of Once’, which was published today.

Eoin Colfer

Book Cover: Eoin Colfer

An exciting new novel

This morning we were absolutely delighted to welcome international bestselling children’s author and former Irish Children’s Laureate, Eoin Colfer to Westholme to talk to students from Years 5-9. Eoin was joined by author, Andrew Donkin and illustrator, Giovanni Rigano as they talked to students and celebrated the publication of their new graphic novel, ‘Illegal’.

Eoin Colfer is the writer of the bestselling, award-winning ‘Artemis Fowl’ series and has sold over 20 million books worldwide. The children had the opportunity to ask diverse and searching questions and the best questions won a sketch from illustrator Giovanni. Maia Lewis from 5W and Clarke Kobelt from 8S won the sketches and will be proudly displaying them in their classrooms. The children enjoyed meeting Eoin, Andrew and Giovanni as they had their books signed.

We want to thank Eoin, Andrew and Giovanni for taking the time to visit us and Elaine and Jake from Silverwood Events for hosting such a wonderful morning.

Excerpt:

An exciting new novel

This morning we were absolutely delighted to welcome international bestselling children’s author and former Irish Children’s Laureate, Eoin Colfer to Westholme to talk to students from Years 5-9. Eoin was joined by author, Andrew Donkin and illustrator, Giovanni Rigano as they talked to students and celebrated the publication of their new graphic novel, ‘Illegal’.

Debi Gliori

Book Cover: Debi Gliori

An afternoon with Debi Gliori

This afternoon we were absolutely delighted to welcome children’s author and illustrator, Debi Gliori to Billinge House. Debi has written many picture books and novels including ‘Goodnight World’ and ‘Dragon Loves Penguins’. She has been shortlisted for major prizes, including the Kate Greenaway Award twice and the Scottish Arts Council Award. The children enjoyed listening to her read her brand new book, ‘All the Way Home’.

Debi talked about all the different characters in her book that lived in the Arctic and her love for penguins! The children had their pencils at the ready and enjoyed following Debi’s instructions of how to illustrate their very own penguin!

We want to thank Debi for taking the time to visit us and Elaine and Jake from Silverwood Events for hosting such a wonderful afternoon.

Excerpt:

Walden Bello, one of the leading figures of the anti-globalisation movement, reveals how an impending financial crash in China may well bring the rest of world's economy down with it.

Cerrie Burnell

Book Cover: Cerrie Burnell

This morning we welcomed childrens’ author Cerrie Burnell to the Croston Theatre to talk to the Junior School children about her latest book, The Girl With the Shark’s Teeth.

The event was organised in partnership with Silverwood Events and Oxford University Press Children’s Books. These talks offer the children a wonderful opportunity to meet an author and hear them speaking in person about their book.

Cerrie Burnell who was formerly a presenter on BBC childrens’ television programme CBeebies, as well as actress, singer and playwright, had her first book Snowflakes published in September 2013. It is about a mixed-race girl from the city sent to live with her grandmother in a magical village, and was inspired by  Cerrie’s daughter, who is also mixed-race. From the start Cerrie believed every child deserves to have their life represented in books.

Cerrie herself was born with her right arm ending slightly below the elbow. Her parents encouraged her to wear a prosthetic arm, but she resisted from the start, and stopped wearing one entirely when she was nine. She says her disability did not hinder her from doing what she wanted, including sports, swimming, windsurfing, singing in the choir or joining the Army cadets. Burnell also suffered from dyslexia which left her unable to read until the age of ten, but none if this was enough to prevent her from following her dreams and inspiring others to do the same.

The Girl With the Shark’s Teeth is Cerrie’s latest book and  is a magical adventure story about a girl called Minnow, who has grown up on a boat with her mother Mercy hearing tales of a place below the ocean called The Wild Deep. When Minnow’s mother is taken from her, she answers a call from the Wild Deep she has been waiting for her whole young life. In her brave and fearless mission, Minnow is transformed forever.

The pupils were enthralled and excited to hear Cerrie speak and she invited some students up on to the stage to answer questions and others were encouraged to read aloud. After a thoroughly engaging talk the children asked questions about Cerrie’s life as an author and how she came to write her stories. Afterwards, she kindly signed books and posed for photographs.

Excerpt:

This morning we welcomed childrens’ author Cerrie Burnell to the Croston Theatre to talk to the Junior School children about her latest book, The Girl With the Shark’s Teeth.