Grab Your Broomstick and Fly to One of Bloomsbury’s Honorary Quidditch Towns

To celebrate the release of the illustrated edition of Quidditch Through the Ages, Bloomsbury has honored 11 towns and villages across the United Kingdom and Ireland that appear in the book.

Throughout this week, towns and villages featured in the Quidditch league in Quidditch Through the Ages will be presented with decorative banners celebrating their fictitious teams. The banners feature each team’s name and crest, along with the recognizable Quidditch hoops, and will be presented during mayoral ceremonies and socially distanced celebrations.

The 11 towns and villages being honored* by Bloomsbury are below:

  • Appleby (Appleby Arrows)
  • Ballycastle (Ballycastle Bats)
  • Caerphilly (Caerphilly Catapults)
  • Falmouth (Falmouth Falcons)
  • Holyhead (Holyhead Harpies)
  • Kenmare (Kenmare Kestrels)
  • Montrose (Montrose Magpies)
  • Portree (Pride of Portree)
  • Tutshill (Tutshill Tornados)
  • Wigtown (Wigtown Wanderers)
  • Wimborne (Wimborne Wasps)

*Due to the local lockdown in Caerphilly, Wales, the town will be awarded its Honorary Quidditch Town status at a later date. In addition, anyone planning a visit to any of the Honorary Quidditch Towns should check the guidelines and rules of the government and local authorities before making the trip.

The first locations to receive their banners were Falmouth (Falmouth Falcons), Ballycastle (Ballycastle Bats), Holyhead (Holyhead Harpies), and Wigtown (Wigtown Wanderers). Speaking at the Falmouth ceremony, which took place at Pendennis Castle, town mayor Councillor Steve Eva revealed that he is looking forward to the joy the banner will bring to residents and visitors:

We’re delighted to be recognised as an Honorary Quidditch Town. Harry Potter’s favourite sport, Quidditch, brings joy to children and adults across the world, and this decorative banner, emblazoned with the town’s team colours, shows our support for our beloved Quidditch team.

 

The Mayor of Falmouth, Councillor Steve Eva, accepts decorative banner in an official ceremony at Pendennis Castle.

The mayor of Falmouth, Councillor Steve Eva, accepts a banner in an official ceremony at Pendennis Castle, honoring Falmouth’s inclusion in the “Quidditch Through the Ages” illustrated edition with art by Emily Gravett. The mayor was joined by Lily-May from Falmouth Primary Academy.

 

To further celebrate the publication of Quidditch Through the Ages, illustrated by Emily Gravett, a spokesperson from Bloomsbury shared hopes that fans will be able to further immerse themselves in the magic of Quidditch by visiting the inspiration for the teams in the book.

We’re really proud to hold these ceremonies in towns and villages across the United Kingdom and Ireland. Quidditch captured the imaginations of children and adults across the world, and the new book, Quidditch Through the Ages, beautifully illustrated by Emily Gravett, is a magical companion for those who want to immerse themselves in the wizarding world of Harry Potter.”

Harry Potter fans can now unearth the real-life towns and villages inspiring the names of Quidditch teams, but we ask anyone planning a visit to these locations to first check national and local travel guidance on coronavirus to ensure their visit is made safely. For communities that are currently experiencing stricter measures, we encourage people to support their favourite Quidditch team virtually by visiting the official Harry Potter fan club, Wizarding World [Digital]. 

 

The Mayor of Holyhead, Councillor Alan Williams in an official ceremony at South Stack.

The mayor of Holyhead, Councillor Alan Williams, heads an official ceremony at South Stack, honoring Holyhead’s inclusion in the “Quidditch Through the Ages” illustrated edition with art by Emily Gravett.

 

Along with the 11 muggle towns and villages, two fictitious towns have also been honored. Chudley (home of the Chudley Cannons) and Puddlemere (home of Puddlemere United) can also be found on Wizarding World Digital‘s list of 13 teams that fans can pledge their allegiance to.

Áine, an 11-year-old Potter fan from Ballycastle, Northern Ireland, shared her excitement at finding out she lives in an Honorary Quidditch Town. 

I’m obsessed with Harry Potter and dream of playing Quidditch, so I’m really happy to find out that I now live in an Honorary Quidditch Town. I loved visiting the sign, and it’s great that Ballycastle has been honoured in this way.

 

Children jumping on broomsticks on the beach for Bloomsbury's Honorary Quidditch Town.

Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council Alderman Mark Fielding accepts a banner in an official ceremony at Ballycastle Beach, honoring Ballycastle’s inclusion in “Quidditch Through the Ages”. He is pictured with Cross and Passion College pupils Áine and Oisin.

 

We’re sure that there will be similar reactions from fans in the other ten Honorary Quidditch Towns across the UK and Ireland, and we can’t wait for each location to receive its banner when it is safe to do so. Will you be visiting these Honorary Quidditch Towns?

 

 

Press Release

QUIDDITCH TOWNS HONOURED
PRESENTATIONS ACROSS THE UK AND IRELAND HONOUR
ELEVEN TOWNS AND VILLAGES FEATURED IN HARRY
POTTER COMPANION ‘QUIDDITCH THROUGH THE AGES’

MONDAY 5TH OCTOBER 2020, UK - Eleven towns and villages across the UK and Ireland, from Appleby to Wigtown, Ballycastle to Wimborne, are being honored in celebration of the new book, Quidditch Through [t]he Ages Illustrated Edition, an essential companion to the Harry Potter series and guide on the wizard’s favourite sport.

To mark tomorrow’s release of Quidditch Through [t]he Ages Illustrated Edition, written by J.K Rowling and illustrated by Emily Gravett, this week Bloomsbury Publishing is presenting towns featured in the wizarding world’s Quidditch league with decorative banners based on iconic Quidditch goal hoops and celebrating their fictitious teams, including the Falmouth Falcons, Kenmare Kestrels and Ballycastle Bats.

The decorative Quidditch banners bearing the crest and team name will be presented in mayoral ceremonies and social-distanced celebrations across the UK and Ireland this week at iconic landmarks from ancient castles to prehistoric stone circles and craggy headlands to mark their [H]onorary Quidditch Town status.

The first scenes of celebration took place today at Pendennis Castle, Falmouth (Falmouth Falcons), once Henry VIII’s breathtaking coastal fortress; Ballycastle Beach, Ballycastle (Ballycastle Bats), a 15th-century Franciscan monastery; South Stack, Holyhead (Holyhead Harpies), Anglesey's most westerly point; and finally, [t]he Square, Wigtown (Wigtown Wanderers), a historic site from the Georgian era, fringed by trees.

British and Irish mayors accepted the Honorary Quidditch Town accolades and received the golden banners in outdoor, socially distanced presentations alongside some young Harry Potter fans [who] visited the landmarks. Over the next three days, Honorary Quidditch Town presentations will continue safely and in line with government guidelines across the UK and Ireland at prehistoric sites, stone circles, medieval castles, Roman forts and churches, celebrating the release of Quidditch Through [t]he Ages and the real-life towns represented by Quidditch teams in the Harry Potter series. In these challenging times, people planning a visit to any of the Honorary Quidditch Towns should check the guidelines and rules of the government, local authorities and specific tourism attraction before making the trip.

A spokesperson from Bloomsbury Publishing said: “We’re really proud to hold these ceremonies in towns and villages across the United Kingdom and Ireland. Quidditch captured the imaginations of children and adults across the world, and the new book, Quidditch Through the Ages, beautifully illustrated by Emily Gravett, is a magical companion for those who want to immerse themselves in the wizarding world of Harry Potter.

Harry Potter fans can now unearth the real-life towns and villages inspiring the names of Quidditch teams, but we ask anyone planning a visit to these locations to first check national and local travel guidance on coronavirus to ensure their visit is made safely. For communities that are currently experiencing stricter measures, we encourage people to support their favourite Quidditch team virtually by visiting the official Harry Potter fan club, Wizarding World [Digital].”

Town [m]ayor Councillor Steve Eva of Falmouth said “We’re delighted to be recognised as an Honorary Quidditch Town. Harry Potter’s favourite sport, Quidditch, brings joy to children and adults across the world, and this decorative banner, emblazoned with the town’s team colours, shows our support for our beloved Quidditch team.”

Áine Franey, 11-years [sic] old, at Cross and Passion College, said: “I'm obsessed with Harry Potter and dream of playing Quidditch, so I’m really happy to find out that I now live in an Honorary Quidditch Town. I loved visiting the sign, and it’s great that Ballycastle has been honoured in this way.”

The eleven honorary Quidditch towns receiving the banners are:
Appleby (Appleby Arrows)
Ballycastle (Ballycastle Bats)
Caerphilly (Caerphilly Catapults)*
Falmouth (Falmouth Falcons)
Holyhead (Holyhead Harpies)
Kenmare (Kenmare Kestrels)
Montrose (Montrose Magpies)
Portree (Pride of Portree)
Tutshill (Tutshill Tornados)
Wigtown (Wigtown Wanderers)
Wimborne (Wimborne Wasps)

*Due to the local lockdown in Caerphilly, the town and community will be awarded its Honorary Quidditch Town status at a later date when the restrictive measures are lifted and the presentation can be conducted safely.

Two fictitious Quidditch towns are also being honoured, [for the] Chudley Cannons and Puddlemere United, and fans can pledge their virtual allegiance to any of the thirteen Quidditch teams by visiting the official Harry Potter fan club, Wizarding World [Digital] (www.wizardingworld.com), to view the banners in-situ [sic] and uncover more information about each Honorary Quidditch Town.

Bloomsbury Publishing has also delivered activity packs to local shops to ensure that everyone can celebrate their Honorary Quidditch Town status.

Bloomsbury’s Quidditch presentations follow the unveiling of last week’s Harry Potter statue in London’s Leicester Square, depicting the memorable moment that Harry Potter (played by Daniel Radcliffe) took flight on his Nimbus 2000 broom over the Hogwarts Quidditch pitch for the very first time, from ‘Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’.

Quidditch Through the Ages Illustrated Edition, written by J.K. Rowling and illustrated by Emily Gravett, is published in hardback on 6th October 2020 by Bloomsbury Publishing, in aid of Comic Relief and Lumos.

Published in hardback on 6th October 2020 (£25:00 / 160pp / 9781526608123)
Deluxe edition also available (£120.00 / 160pp / 9781526612373)

 

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Lucy O'Shea

I was given a copy of Philosopher's Stone in 2001, and instantly, I was hooked. Since then, my passion for Potter has been equaled only by my passion for fair access to education (and watching motorsport). A spell I wish could exist in the Muggle world is the summoning charm because this Hufflepuff is not a "particularly good finder"!