Acclaimed children’s writer Sir Michael Morpurgo (French & English, 1967) has written many award-winning books for children including War Horse, Why the Whales Came and Private Peaceful, as well as screenplays and libretti (the words) for opera. He credits King’s with being the place his ‘love of stories and storytelling was rekindled through the magic of the ancient stories such as Beowulf and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight.’
Michael and his wife Clare founded the charity Farms for City Children in 1976 and it has been giving urban children from around the country the opportunity to experience life on a real farm for over 40 years. He was Children’s Laureate from 2003–05, was awarded an OBE in 2006 and was knighted in the 2018 New Year’s Honours list.
Michael’s works have often been adapted for stage, film, radio and TV. The National Theatre’s record-breaking adaptation of War Horse embarked on a UK-wide tour from September 2017, having spent eight years in London’s West End and played to over seven million people in 11 countries around the world.
Did you know? Michael was inspired to become a children’s writer while working as a year six teacher. He found he was better able to keep the attention of his class by telling them his own stories rather than reading to them from books.