The Children's Trail History

We are very proud of our Children’s Trail and many stories inspired it. The artist Martin Heron was commissioned to create the series of public artworks for (and by) the community.

A team, including Martin, writer Lucy Banwell and photographer Paula Moss at OrangeDot, worked with schools, community groups and residents in Leighton-Linslade, discussing ideas, making models and writing stories. The Trail was launched in 2012 and includes inspiration drawn from the imaginations of world-famous children’s writers such as Roald Dahl, Philip Pullman, Michael Rosen, and our own Mary Norton, as well as award winning Bedfordshire children’s author Julia Jarman, who attended the launch.

Since then the Children’s Trail has become well loved by our community and has a following of fans.

Inspiration for the Leighton-Linslade Children’s Trail

A huge amount of Children’s literature inspired the Trail, and there doesn’t need to be a single right answer to the meaning of any of the artworks. But you might like to try a few of these amazing books and see what they mean to you.

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The Children’s Trail Reading List


The Borrowers – Mary Norton
Bedknob and Broomstick – Mary Morton
Winne the Pooh – A.A. Milne
Peter Pan – J.M Barrie
I was a Rat! – Philip Pullman
His Dark Materials Triology – Philip Pullman
We’re going on a bear hunt – Michael Rosen
The Time Travelling Cat – Julia Jarman
The Gruffalo – Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler
Big and small – David Bedford & Leonie Worthington
Skellig – David Almond
The Kitten and the Falling Leaves  – William Wordsworth
Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Caroll
Alice Through the Looking Glass – Lewis Caroll
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl
The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me – Roald Dahl

The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame
The School Mouse – Dick King Smith
Martin’s Mice – Dick King Smith
Roverandom – J.R.R Tolkien
Black Beauty – Anna Sewell
The Quangle Wangle’s Hat – Edward Lear
War Horse  – Michael Morpurgo
The Ship That Flew – Hilda Lewis
The Chronicles of Narnia – C.S Lewis
The Fallen Birdman – Roger McGough
A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
Harry Potter – J.K Rowling
The Wolves in the Walls – Neil Gaiman
Stig of the Dump – Clive King
Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome
Gullivers Travels – Jonathan Swift
The Happy Prince – Oscar Wilde
The School Boy – William Blake