The Gruffalo has become one of the best-loved children’s books of recent years, and a special 20th birthday party will be held in Manchester for the fearsome beast – attended by author and illustrator Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler.

On Sunday 24th March, to mark The Gruffalo‘s 20th anniversary since publication, Z Arts in Hulme is to host a special birthday party where the co-creators will sign books and take part in an extra special Q&A session.

The arts centre is currently hosting the immersive exhibition celebrating the works of Donaldson and Scheffler – A World Inside a Book: Gruffalos, Dragons and Other Creatures.

The exhibition has been a huge hit – with tickets selling out up to April already – although there’s still plenty of time to book as it is on in Hulme until February 2020.

Now, families will have the chance to meet Julia and Axel, as well as The Gruffalo himself, at the birthday party in March, with tickets on sale now. The duo will be signing books, before presenting The Gruffalo with a birthday cake, singing happy birthday, and taking part in a live Q&A session where Axel will also be illustrating live.

Included in the ticket price to the party are film screenings of some of Julia and Axel’s many stories, arts and craft activities, and entry into the A World Inside a Book: Gruffalos, Dragons and Other Creatures exhibition.

Children’s ticket prices also include a copy of the special 20th anniversary edition of The Gruffalo.

The exhibition allows children the chance to creep into the magical world of forests, miniature houses and dragon schools made famous by books like Zog, Room on the Broom, The Smartest Giant in Town and The Gruffalo.

Tickets for The Gruffalo event are £20 for children, £10 adults, and £3 for babes in arms – and will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis. They are already selling fast!

To book tickets or find out more, call the Z-arts box office on 0161 232 6089, visit the box office in person, or go to


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