From Lego to tattoo art: Devon libraries set for Fun Palaces 2019

PUBLISHED: 07:00 29 September 2019

People of all ages can get involved in Fun Palaces 2019.

People of all ages can get involved in Fun Palaces 2019.

Fun Palaces

Libraries in East Devon are gearing up for an action-packed weekend of fun, with the annual Fun Palaces celebrations.

From Lego to handbell ringing to tattoo art, Fun Palaces is a free, national campaign for all ages, taking place on October 5 and 6.

It is designed to promote culture at the heart of communities and bring local people together to learn and experience new things using arts, craft, science, tech, digital, heritage and sports activities.

Libraries Unlimited, the charity responsible for running Devon and Torbay Libraries is committed to providing culture for all, and this year 28 of the charities 54 libraries will be holding their own free Fun Palaces.

The events and activities are led by local people who give their time to share their passions and skills.

Rachel Gee, Libraries Unlimited's service development manager, said: "Libraries Unlimited first joined the Fun Palaces campaign in 2016 and it has been inspiring to see it grow in Devon ever since.

"Visitors to our libraries can expect everything from trying carpet curling to making their own smoothies using a bike.

"Each participating library has something fun, free and community led.

"We love everything about Fun Palaces at Libraries Unlimited. Not only do they bring people together, but they help communities to make positive change, share new skills and give everyone access to culture, art, science, technology and much more.

"We're incredibly pleased and proud of all of our libraries that are getting involved in this year's activities and we look forward to seeing lots of people in our libraries."

Since 2014 a total of 1,367 Fun Palaces across the world have been made by 32,800 people, with 450,000 taking part. This year will be the sixth Fun Palaces Weekend.

A full list of timings and other events can be found on at or by visiting the Fun Palaces website

Exmouth Library Fun Palaces

Saturday, October 5

10am-3.30pm, free

10.30am-11.30am: Lego Club. Head along and get creative with the library's huge collection.

Noon-12.30pm: Local artist Christophe Szpajdel talks about his artistic specialism, metal and tattoo art. Followed by an interactive workshop led by Mr Szpajdel. Advance booking for both of these sessions is required.

2.30pm-3.30pm: Storytelling and drama workshop led by local entertainer Pixie Maz. A fun-filled hour for all the family. Advance booking is required.

Honiton Library Fun Palaces

Saturday, October 5

10am-12.30pm, free

Expect lots of fun free events. Check with Honiton Library for details.

Ottery St Mary Library Fun Palaces

Saturday, October 5

10am-1pm, free

Expect lots of fun free events. Head along and try handbell ringing, card making, cross stitch, spinning wheel and balloon making.

Seaton Library Fun Palaces

Saturday, October 5

10am-12.45pm, free

Expect arts, music, crafts and juggling.

Sidmouth Library Fun Palaces

Saturday, October 5

9.30am-12.30pm, free

Join Sidmouth Library for carpet curling and crochet. Children can make a simple electric motor with the Sidmouth Science Festival and bring in objects to view under our microscope. The library will have art, sport and science fun for all ages.

Be a Computer! Fun Palace (St Thomas Library, Exeter)

Saturday, October 5

2pm-3pm, free

For all ages: Become part of the computer. A fun activity and session learning about the inner workings of computers at a rudimentary level. No computers will be harmed in the performance of this activity as one won't be used - you will become the computer functions.

Exeter Library Fun Palace

Saturday, October 5

10am-11am, Foyer area: Urbanflow Streetdance, free workshop.

10am-midday: Fablab drop-in sessions. Make a keyring on the laser cutter

11.30am-1.30pm, Rougemont Room: Raspberry PI jam - try out a credit card-sized computer.

2pm-3pm, foyer: The Rhythm of Life Choir workshop and performance. Songs from Paul Simon, Elton John and Stevie Wonder through to Muse, Sia and Coldplay.

2pm-5pm, Rougemont Room: Ockment Valley Handbell Ringers.

10am-5pm, Rougemont Lounge: University of Exeter iGEM, Microscience: Plastic in Action. Take part in workshops investigating microplastics and try extracting DNA from strawberries.

10am-5pm, children's library: Met Office weather workshops.

Sunday, October 6

6-4pm, café: Meet author Edith Fassnidge. Rinse, Spin, Repeat is a graphic memoir about the author's experience of surviving the Indian Ocean tsunami.

2pm-3pm, café: Music Machine 4 is a playful, playable, multi-player audio installation. Visit and search 'Simon Belshaw' to book a aplce.

3pm-4pm, café/foyer: Have a go at traditional Scottish dancing.

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