Quentin Blake and John Yeoman: 50 Years of Children’s Books – Exhibition at The Base, Greenham

On Friday 18 September 2020 The Base, Greenham launched its exciting new exhibition, and first after lockdown, a showcase of the illustrations and writings of Quentin Blake and John Yeoman. 

Much loved illustrator and cartoonist Quentin Blake began his esteemed career creating illustrations for magazines and book covers after studying English at Cambridge University. A lover of drawing from an early age, Blake was first published when he was just 16. You may also recognise his work from his collaborations with Roald Dahl, in books like ‘The Twits’ and ‘The Enormous Crocodile’.

John Yeoman is a writer and author of children’s books who served many years at the French Lycée in London as the Head of English.  

Friends since school, both have a love for story telling in different forms and this passion is exemplified in their long-standing professional partnership spanning 50 years, which began in 1960 with ‘A Drink of Water’, and over a dozen books. Their work is showcased for the first time in House of Illustration’s exhibition.

What to Expect

Visitors to the exhibition will be immersed in Blake and Yeoman’s fantastical story-telling world. Blake’s colourful and thoughtful illustrations adorn the walls, with some embellished with Yeoman’s writing from their beloved children’s books. Printing proofs and original drawings are also on show, allowing the visitor to see the thoughts and musings behind the published works. Some of the titles that can be expected are ‘Sixes and Sevens’ (1971), ‘The Boy who Sprouted Antlers’ (1984, 2002), and of course the book which started it all, ‘A drink of Water’ (1960). 

I would recommend this as a fascinating insight into the minds of an illustrator and children’s storyteller, as well as a fun morning/ afternoon out for all lovers of children’s stories. The Honesty Café, located at the entrance of the building, serves refreshing drinks and delicious food, a welcoming addition to the exhibition for before or after your visit. 


How to Book

The Base have been working hard to keep everyone safe on their visit. Socially distanced queue spacing and Track and Trace are applied. Masks are required to be worn. Tickets must be booked in advance either online or from the Corn Exchange Box Office on 0845 5218 218 (charges may apply). For more information on guidelines please visit welcome-back-to-the-base

Prices: £7.50 (£6.50 conc.); under 16s £6; under 5s free; family ticket £20. Tickets must only be booked for members of your household. For more information on tickets please visit event/quentin-blake-and-john-yeoma

The Exhibition intends to run until Sunday 6 December 2020.

Where to Find The Base

Communications Road, Greenham Business Park, Greenham, Berkshire, RG19 6HN. There is a free car park on site for visitors. The Base is under 10 minutes from the centre of Newbury and just 10 minutes from the Tothill junction of the A34 with easy access to the M3 and M4.

Photo Credit: Holly Bobbins


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