Zog activity trail launches at Bedgebury Pinetum and Jeskyns Community Woodland in Kent

by Angela Cole

A new woodland activity trail based on the children's book Zog flies into Kent this week.

It's arrival could be perfect timing for cash-strapped families keen to get their kids out in the fresh air this January whilst not spending too many pennies after Christmas.

Zog arrives at Bedgebury National Pinetum and Forest in Goudhurst and Jeskyns Community Woodland near Gravesend on Friday, January 11.

Zog, voiced by Hugh Skinner, will feature in the trail after appearing on BBC1 this Christmas Day. Picture: PA Photo/Magic Light.
Zog, voiced by Hugh Skinner, will feature in the trail after appearing on BBC1 this Christmas Day. Picture: PA Photo/Magic Light.

The new book-themed trail follows the success of other events at Forestry Commission sites across the country featuring Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler classics including the Gruffalo, Stick Man and Highway Rat.

Zog is a loveable - if somewhat clumsy - dragon at Dragon School who is always striving to win a golden star. He learns essential dragon skills at school including flying, roaring, breathing fire and capturing princesses.

The trail also follows the premiere of the animated special from Magic Light Pictures, on BBC One on Christmas Day, which is still available to watch on the BBC iPlayer.

Zog author Julia Donaldson. Picture: PA Photo/Liam Jackson
Zog author Julia Donaldson. Picture: PA Photo/Liam Jackson

As part of the Forestry Commission trail, children can enter a forest classroom to learn lessons just like Zog, including how animals fly, what sounds they make and how they catch their prey.

As well as winning gold stars along the self-led trail, there will be panels which have a hidden image that children can find using a coloured lens, found inside their activity pack.

Visitors can buy the packs for £3 from the visitor centres/cafes and they also include a Zog mask, activity sheets, a pencil and stickers.

The Highway Rat trail at Jeskyns in January last year
The Highway Rat trail at Jeskyns in January last year

Dan Jennings from Bedgebury said: "The trail will be an amazing adventure, encouraging visitors to make the most of our beautiful forest and National Pinetum.

"We are very excited to be working with Magic Light Pictures again and are looking forward to families having a new and exciting reason to visit Bedgebury."

For more details of the trails and free downloadable activity sheets, visit forestryengland.uk/zog

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