...or, at least, the landscape and the folklore that inspired him!
Next month, the Roald Dahl Museum in Great Missenden are giving you the chance to do just that. They've organised a whoopsy whiffling story trail into Angling Spring Wood, where the author used to walk whilst concocting his marvellous plots and cunning characters – for Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Matilda, The BFG and so many other favourite children's books.
The wood itself is said to have particularly inspired the events in Danny, Champion of the World – and one tree in particular was where Dahl told his children Fantastic Mr Fox made his home! Though sadly that tree has since blown down in a storm.
On Sunday 13th August, our Chip will lead three swishwiffling storytelling walks, sharing some of the folklore that inspired Dahl's works: some local Buckinghamshire legends, like the tale of the Slender Slug unique to this area, plus some of the Norwegian folk tales that Dahl's mother told him when he was just a chiddler.
The walk also passes some of the spots where Dahl used to sit with his children and test out his stories on them. So you really can imagine what it would have been like to listen to storytelling from the man himself!
The first 20min of each walk is spent heading from the Museum to a glade surrounded by beech trees – a prominent tree in his mother's native Norway as well as the south of England, which might explain why Dahl felt so at home in Great Missenden.
Chip will then share one of Dahl's mother's "bedtime stories", a Norwegian folk tale, giving everyone a chance to catch their breath – in both senses of the phrase! Stories such as Boot's face-off with a troll, a princess' magic but weird aunties, and the giant who didn't keep his heart in his body...
The walk back will take about 10-15min, making the entire experience about an hour in total. And along the way, Chip will lead some fun activities to keep every step delightfully entertaining!
This story trail has already been walked by three eager and engaged groups who joined Chip back in May. While there, Chip took the photo below of his set-up in the glade – so you can have an idea what to expect...
The walks begin at 12pm, 1:30pm and 3pm. If you can make it, please leave us a comment below to let us know – and Chip will keep an eye out for you!
But please note: places must be booked in advance. So nip now to the Roald Dahl Museum website for details about how to book – just click here!