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Did you go to Harry Potter Book Night?

PUBLISHED: 11:58 07 February 2020 | UPDATED: 11:58 07 February 2020

The Harry Potter Book Night was held at Waterstone's Ipswich. Pictured is nine-year-old Amber. Picture: ANDREW PAPWORTH

The Harry Potter Book Night was held at Waterstone's Ipswich. Pictured is nine-year-old Amber. Picture: ANDREW PAPWORTH

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There wasn't a muggle in sight as Harry Potter fans young and old gathered at an Ipswich bookshop to celebrate all things Hogwarts.

The Harry Potter Book Night was held at Waterstone's Ipswich. Pictured is eight-year-old George Smy. Picture: ANDREW PAPWORTHThe Harry Potter Book Night was held at Waterstone's Ipswich. Pictured is eight-year-old George Smy. Picture: ANDREW PAPWORTH

Children's bookseller Amy Fountain had been carefully plotting and planning the Harry Potter Book Night at the Waterstone's store in Buttermarket for several weeks, held to coincide with similar events across the country on Thursday, February 6.

The spellbinding celebration was an early sell-out as youngsters came dressed as their favourite characters for a game of Quidditch, magical raffles and the chance to win the Triwizard Cup.

But Mrs Fountain said: "I think a lot of the parents have dragged their kids along, rather than the other way round."

The 35-year-old - whose own son Charlie, 11, came dressed as Dobby the house elf - said the book and film series "just captures people's imaginations".

The Harry Potter Book Night was held at Waterstone's Ipswich. Pictured is organiser Amy Fountain, children's bookseller at Waterstone's Ipswich, with her son Charlie, 11. Picture: ANDREW PAPWORTHThe Harry Potter Book Night was held at Waterstone's Ipswich. Pictured is organiser Amy Fountain, children's bookseller at Waterstone's Ipswich, with her son Charlie, 11. Picture: ANDREW PAPWORTH

She said readers, whatever their age or background, can relate to so much in the novels - whether it is dealing with bullying or being different for everyone else.

"There is something for everyone, whatever you're looking for," she said.

George Smy, eight, from Ipswich, came dressed as Harry Potter - but his favourite character is his namesake, George Weasley, "because he is really funny and runs the joke shop".

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He said he enjoys Harry Potter because "it's entertaining, adventurous and a lot of fun".

Nine-year-old Monica Crosby, who came with her friend Ella Kerry, eight, said she likes the books "because there's magic".

Her favourite in JK Rowling's series is Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the seventh and final book - "because it's spooky".

Karle Bolt, senior bookseller at Waterstone's Ipswich, said Harry Potter had given the book trade a major boost ever since Harry Potter and the Philospher's Stone was released in the 1990s.

Of the book night, where he ran a Harry Potter Pictionary game, he said: "We do this every year - it gets kids into the bookshop.

"I don't know why the books are so popular, but children just engage with them.

"The appeal is wide-ranging and cross generational."

The Ipswich Waterstone's event has been one of several Harry Potter Book Nights taking place across Suffolk and north Essex, primarily on Thursday and Friday.

For those who missed all the fun, Sudbury Library is hosting a half-term craft event on Monday, February 17 and Monday, February 24, from 10.30am until noon on both days. Call the library on 01787 321595.

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