Dreams for the Future – Moat Brae’s Pre-Opening Festival

Young people snaffle Captain Hook’s keys to give sneak previews of Moat Brae and crocodile takes centre stage in town centre carnival

From sneak previews of the newly restored Moat Brae House to a CrocRock! Carnival, Dumfries is gearing up for a 10-day celebration of its JM Barrie heritage and of young people’s storytelling.

Dreams For The Future Festival

The Dreams for the Future Festival, from 24 November to 2 December, celebrates Scotland’s Year of Young People 2018 and will feature events and activities for all ages involving storytelling, music, theatre and more

It is a “thank you” to Dumfries and Galloway for its support in the restoration of Moat Brae House – where Peter Pan began – before it opens to the public next spring as Scotland’s National Centre for Children’s Literature and Storytelling.

Dreams for the Future offers a foretaste of the opportunities it hopes to provide for the region’s young people in years to come.

Festival highlights will include Mutiny! (1 December) when members of the JMB Creatives (Moat Brae’s group for under 26s) plan to grab Captain Hook’s jealously guarded keys and give members of the public a sneak look inside the house.

There will also be the CrocRock! Carnival in the town centre ahead of the annual Dumfries Christmas lights switch-on and an evening of theatre called Staged, the Take Flight Lecture.

Co-curated by the JMB Creatives

The JMB Creatives, Moat Brae’s group for under-26s, are at the heart of Dreams for the Future. They have been working with Peter Pan Moat Brae Trust (PPMBT) staff and volunteers to plan the events and will take over the house for part of the celebration to offer a great programme of activities.

PPMBT is also working closely with many other partners including Dumfries and Galloway Council and Dumfries Academy to arrange events elsewhere in the town.

Festival Highlights


Staged! celebrates JM Barrie’s schooldays through performances by young people from Dumfries & Galloway. It will feature the world premiere of specially commissioned music and dance by Patrick Dupuy, of Dumfries School of Dance and D&G Schools Ensemble.

Book Tickets for Staged!

The evening also includes the first fully staged* production since the 1870s of JM Barrie’s earliest play Bandelero the Bandit by Theatre Royal Junior Guild. The play was written by Barrie when he was a 17-year-old student at the academy.

Young people from the academy will also present Our Dramatic Club, their own production about how the young Barrie and his friends set up the school’s first drama club and generated a controversy that echoed across Scotland when they staged Bandelero in 1877.

There will also be the Lost Boys and Girls Reunion by Dumfries Arts Award Programme, a performance inspired by the story of Peter Pan. It has been devised by the young people on Dumfries Arts Award Programme, which provides personalised support and work experience training opportunities to young people aged 16-26 with additional needs.

Dumfries Academy, Academy Street, Dumfries, DG1 1DD
Saturday, 24 November 2018
7pm – 8.30pm
Tickets from Midsteeple Box Office and online £2 for (under 26), £5 (27 and over).

Take Flight Lecture

The inaugural Take Flight Lecture will be delivered by Tam Baillie, Scotland’s former Commissioner for Children and Young People. He will discuss every aspect of play – fun, excitement, creativity and learning and its undervalued importance in children’s development. He will offer personal experiences and reflections on how well (or not) we are doing in terms of children in Scotland.

Book Tickets For Take Flight

As commissioner, Tam had a duty to promote and safeguard the rights of children and young people in Scotland through raising awareness of children’s rights, involving children and young people in his work and influencing law, policy and practice with children and young people. Tam is currently a board member of the World International Play Association, on the board of the Scottish IPA and a trustee of Upstart campaigning for a kindergarten stage in Scottish education.

The Take Flight Lectures will be a regular event and aim to educate and inspire anyone who is interested in creative learning and the power of imagination.

Moat Brae House, George St, Dumfries, DG1 2EA
Monday, 26 November 2018
Tickets £8

Inspired! Workshop

A creative writing workshop for aspiring, young writers with one of the leading authors in the field of young adult fiction with author Cathy Cassidy. It’s a great chance to pick up top tips from one of the UK’s most popular writers of today.

Book Tickets For The Inspired! Workshop

Places are free but limited, so booking is essential.

Moat Brae House, George St, Dumfries, DG1 2EA
Tuesday, 27 November 2018
4pm to 5.15pm

Inspired! Conversation

Meet Cathy Cassidy and hear her in conversation with our JMB Creatives as she discusses her latest novel Sami’s Silver Lining.

Book Tickets For Inspired! Conversation

Places are free but limited, so booking is essential.

Moat Brae House, George St, Dumfries, DG1 2EA
Tuesday, 27 November 2018
6.30pm to 7.30pm

Mutiny! Sneak Preview

The JMB Creatives plan to grab the keys for Moat Brae from Captain Hook and invite the public in to take a sneak peek inside the birthplace of Peter Pan. The house that inspired one of the best-loved stories of all time has undergone a multi-million pound restoration and transformation, and this is a chance to be among the first to look around.

Book Your Mutiny! Tickets

The young people will give tours of the Georgian house and reveal the plans for its future as an international visitor attraction and Scotland’s new National Centre for Children’s Literature and Storytelling.

Moat Brae House, George St, Dumfries, DG1 2EA
Saturday, 1 December 2018
Tours every half hour from 11am, last entry 2.30pm
Free but places are limited and booking is essential.

CrocRock! Carnival

A carnival themed round the famous crocodile – Captain Hook’s deadly and determined enemy and one of the greatest characters in Peter Pan. Taking place in the heart of Dumfries this is a chance for the whole community to have a fun get-together dedicated to JM Barrie’s wonderful story that started in this lovely town in the south west of Scotland.

The carnival and parade will all lead up to the annual Christmas lights switch on and there will be lots to do and see – including free entertainments, market stalls and more.

Dumfries town centre
Sunday, 2 December 2018
Approx. 4:30pm

To book for any of the Dreams for the Future events online go to http://www.dgboxoffice.co.uk or you can pop into the Midesteeple Box Office, and for further information see the Peter Pan Moat Brae Trust website at https://www.peterpanmoatbrae.org

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