Belhaven Hill School

Co-ed Boarding & Day School for ages 5-13

Author Dan Smith visits the school

Author Dan Smith visits the school

When author Dan Smith came to Belhaven Hill on Thursday 24th February the pupils were enthralled as he told them of his early experiences; watching films in the 1970s and living in different parts of the world such as Indonesia and Brazil as a child and a growing teenager. He also talked about his life at a rather different type of boarding school in the UK on the other side of the world from his parents.  He told Belhaven pupils that back in the seventies, boarding school had been about survival and he described an adventurous childhood during the school holidays in Asia and South America fishing for piranha and camping out with wild animals such as turtles and black caimans.  

Dan told his audience how he took to reading adventure stories at boarding school as a way of escaping for just ten minutes a day before lights out in the dormitory. Dan said he had seen photographs on our website of the school and he described his long journey home with his older brother and how he had had to change to a small twelve-seater aeroplane to fly out to the place where parents lived in the jungle close to an enormous river.  “There were no phones!” he replied when asked if he could call his parents from school.

Finally, he told the children about his books and how he loved writing adventure stories. In particular, he described the Crooked Oak Mystery series and his latest book Nisha’s War. In thanking him and Rosamund De La Hey for bringing a Book Fair to the school Mrs Parks explained how there were some titles such as My Friend the Enemy and Boy X already in the library.  Pupils were excited to buy copies of his books to be signed and have a chance to ask questions of Dan.