The day we were invited in to The Archive at The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre in Great Missenden, will go down in our career history.
You all recognize those moments, those pinch me moments, when you can’t actually believe that your childhood ambition is being achieved. Roald Dahl, the World’s No.1 story teller – the making of our childhoods and the shaping of our children’s……..Well that ambition was achieved and to be honest, knocked out of the park.
The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre is just moments from our office in Old Amersham. It sits on the quaint High Street in the stunning village of Great Missenden where Roald Dahl lived and wrote for over 36 years. This village is nothing short of magical with chocolate box houses, idyllic shops, stunning surrounding countryside and a gigantuous dollop of Roald Dahl heritage.
The Museum and Story Centre is enjoyed by both adults and children alike – however I would argue that the ‘accompanying’ adults are actually having more of the fun……especially in our case.
So having visited a few times already, clocking up a number of visits with our children, we jumped at the chance of visiting the talented team and with the additional cherry on top being let in to The Archive (aka The Chokey) – well the squeals could be heard for miles across the county of Bucks when they called.
As we entered the climate-controlled room above the Story Centre, fittingly named The Chokey (all thanks to Miss Trunchbull), we were both nervous and silently exploding inside.
This room is where the Roald Dahl magic has been documented – hundreds of boxes of manuscripts are organized with the most precision and excellence you would expect from the Roald Dahl team. We wanted to know everything we didn’t already know about The BFG – where the idea came from, how the dream catching came about, what dreams were written but didn’t make it in to the book, what characters had been considered before the final book was published.
We were having to control ourselves, like keeping a golden phizzwizard contained inside, when the team brought out the original manuscripts. Seeing the original personal archived material, the yellow lined papers, with his hand written working notes, all his ideas, his corrections, his copious drafts. We were silenced… Leafing through page after page we found out that Sophie was in fact a little boy called Jody on his original working notes, to read his dreams that never actually made it in… We won’t tell you any more of these ‘secrets that nobody is ever hearing before’ as they are all in our extra chapter at the back of the book for you to discover for yourself.
The Museum and Story Centre was in fact created as a lasting home for this unique collection, and what a resource to share with us all, thank you.
If there is one thing we have learnt on this incredible journey with Roald Dahl is that we must enjoy life through children’s eyes, reading enables us all to unlock creativity inside of us, we all have it and we owe it to our children that we unlock theirs. Saving bedtime and bringing it back to the importance of a routine, that includes reading before bed is a movement we are backing wholeheartedly. Unlock those ideas before bed, get a good night’s sleep and wake up knowing you can be anything you want to be. So many of his book characters faced such adversity but had the focus and determination to overcome it. Let us all unlock our children’s creativity – we owe it to them and we will have such fun along the way.
Discover our BFG Bath, Book and Bedtime Gift Set here.