Main content

Children’s culture for all

The Alfie Atkins Cultural Centre (Alfons Åbergs Kulturhus) contributes to children’s development through play and learning.

The children’s book character Alfie Atkins represents many positive values such as kindness, joy and curiosity. These values also permeate the Alfie Atkins Cultural Centre, which opened in the autumn of 2012 in the Old Seed Shop at the Garden Society of Gothenburg (Trädgårdsföreningen). The Alfie Atkins Cultural Centre is unique in Gothenburg, in Sweden and worldwide.

Our vision is to be a leading children’s cultural centre where ALL children feel they belong. By ALL, we mean regardless of functional ability, language, origin and social situation. We primarily target children from 0 to 8 years old and their adults.

The Alfie Atkins Cultural Centre has over 64,000 visitors a year, is open 361 days a year, and is a non-profit organisation. The Centre promotes children’s rights, equality and diversity.

Alfie Atkins lives in the Old Seed Shop at the Garden Society of Gothenburg (Trädgårdsföreningen), where past and present meet in a creative environment. This is a place where inquisitive children can play, learn, get up to mischief, climb and discover a building full of fascinating things. Accompanying adults can enjoy the Centre together with the children, sit down in the reading corner, have a snack in the café, or take on the role of Alfie Atkins’ dad or grandma. On the way home you can buy a fun souvenir from our gift shop.

The Alfie Atkins Cultural Centre offers:

Theatre productions based on Gunilla Bergström’s stories about Alfie Atkins. Here you’ll find the block of flats where Alfie Atkins lives, his sitting room, the scary monster, the helicopter and of course Milla, Malcolm (Mållgan), grandma and much more. A cosy reading corner with plenty of books to borrow and read.

A wide range of high-quality programme activities. We present three to four program activities daily, of which at least two are theatre performances. To make our activities more accessible, we regularly have performances with mime or sign language. Many children have their first cultural experience at Alfie Atkins’, and we make our performances short to suit even the very youngest visitors. Needless to say, we love reading – both aloud and silently. We are also passionate about children’s rights and actively promote the values of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. See our programme calendar here.

Educational projects in partnership with Chalmers and the University of Gothenburg, funded by foundations. Groups from preschools and schools are welcome to attend the playful, interactive lessons free of charge.

Through early learning initiatives, we complement the role of preschools and schools. The aim is to spark interest and curiosity and inspire children and their teachers to continue learning. In a collaboration between experts, students, teachers and performers, we explore the effervescent subject of chemistry and the fascinating world of space. Read more here. The Alfie Atkins Cultural Centre also organises special courses for teachers in collaboration with partners.

Outreach activities and inclusion initiatives to increase our accessibility. Exclusion is a major challenge in society, whether due to functional disability, social circumstances, language or segregation. The Alfie Atkins Cultural Centre takes a stand to promote greater inclusion and reduce marginalisation. Right from the outset, we’ve been focusing strongly on inclusion and accessibility for minority groups and functionally disabled or vulnerable children. We are continuously developing in this area. We have an important role to fill in society as a playful promoter of the positive values embodied by the character of Alfie Atkins. Through play and learning, we aim to contribute to children’s development and to a better start in life.

The foundation

The Alfie Atkins Cultural Centre is managed by a non-profit foundation. Its Board of Directors works on a voluntary basis and consists of representatives of the City of Gothenburg, the business community and the Bergström family.

Operations take place through a wholly owned subsidiary in the form of a limited company where the CEO reports to the Board of Directors. Any operating surplus is reinvested in the company’s activities.

The Board of the Alfie Atkins Cultural Centre in Gothenburg

Birgitta L-Öfverholm, Chair
Carl Henric Wallblom, CEO Lesley Cosmetics
Lars Isacson, Strategic Advisor Göteborg & Co
Lena Treschow Torell, Professor of Physics, Sister of Gunilla Bergström
Marie- Louise Hänel Sandström, (M), Swedish Parliament
Martin Stener, Business Development Consultant
Olof Nyström (co-opted), Advokatfirma Lindahl
Peter Faltpihl, (V)
Pål Andersson, Bok-Makaren AB, son of Gunilla Bergström
Sofia Torell, Bok-Makaren AB, niece of Gunilla Bergström

Members of the Board of the Alfie Atkins Cultural Centre. Left to right: Lars Isacson, Lena Treschow Torell, Peter Faltpihl, Birgitta L-Öfverholm, Anna Forsgren, Carl Henric Wallblom and Olof Nyström. Not pictured: Pål Andersson, Marie-Louise Hänel Sandström, Martin Stener and Sofia Torell.