Two Humboldts to be named in honour of fictional time-travelling penguins

Birdland is great for groups visiting the Cotswolds

A popular children’s author and illustrator will pay a flying visit to Birdland Park & Gardens during February half term.

Sheena Dempsey, whose delightful animal characters include penguins Pablo and Splash, will hold a workshop for budding comic book creators during her day at the Gloucestershire wildlife park on Wednesday, February 14.

Described as “irresistibly funny” by The Guardian, her illustrated novel takes the time-travelling pair on an unexpected adventure back to the dinosaur age.  

Sheena, whose other works include Bad Panda and Dave Pigeon, will create a Pablo and Splash illustrated window from 9.15am before hosting a workshop at noon in which she’ll talk about the inspiration behind her book series and graphic novels. There will also be a character design draw-along, a story-building session and a question-and-answer forum.

After the workshop there will be a penguin feeding display and a naming ceremony (2.30pm), in which two resident penguins will become officially known as Pablo and Splash. Sheena will complete the day with a book signing at 3pm.

Simon Cox, Birdland’s general manager, said: “We’re absolutely thrilled that Sheena and her publishers Bloomsbury will be at the park to give a fascinating insight into her brilliant animal characters and in particular, Pablo and Splash.

“Birdland is the perfect backdrop to discuss her time-travelling penguins and once we have officially named two of our residents in honour of her book, we will enter one of them into Penguin International’s March of the Penguin Madness, which was won by our very own Spike last year.”

Visitors to the park during February half term will also have chance to sample its fantastic new café The Nest, which was officially opened late last year by rugby World Cup winner Phil Vickery.

There is a daily selection of mouthwatering sandwiches and salads or for something warmer during the winter months, there is the chance to load your choice of potato or rice with tasty toppings including pulled pork, beef chilli or halloumi.

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