Top children’s author to receive honorary degree

Michael Murpurgo
Michael Murpurgo
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TOP children’s author Michael Murpurgo - whose most famous book is currently being turned into a 2012 blockbuster by Steven Spielberg - is to be given an honorary degree by Sheffield Hallam University.

The author of War Horse, Why the Whales Came, The Voices of Children and more than 100 others, will receive the award for his services to children’s literature.

Over the years, Michael has written children’s literature in historical fiction, animal stories, fantasies, picture books, easy readers, and retellings of legend and myth.

War Horse has already been a successful stage production, while a concert version of the show was performed at Hallam last year.

Michael read the powerful story of a young boy and his beloved horse and their experiences of the First World War.

In 1976 Michael and his wife, Clare, set up Farms for City Children to give inner city school children the chance to experience farm life and now have three farms in Devon, Wales and Gloucestershire.

In 2003 he became the third Children’s Laureate, a role to highlight the importance of children’s books he had originally helped set up with poet Ted Hughes.

He said: “It’s a great honour to be awarded an honorary degree from Sheffield Hallam University, which has an excellent reputation for its creative writing courses.”

Michael will receive his honorary degree on Wednesday, November 16.