Past Marlborough Literary Festivals in Words and Photos
Marlborough Literary Festival 2015
All photos courtesy of Ben Phillips Photography.
Marlborough Literary Festival 2014
2014 Launch Party Photos
Marlborough Literary Festival 2013
Download 2013 Brochure
The fourth Marlborough Literary Festival was a cracker, if we say so ourselves. Fay Weldon opened proceedings on Friday night with some sharp observation and witty anecdotes about her literary career. The next morning there was a wonderful discussion on writing about Palestine between journalist Bidisha and novelist Selma Dabbagh, and then Bidisha hosted an event with Bernardine Evaristo who spoke about creative writing and her latest book Mr Loverman. Historian AN Wilson appeared twice, discussing Dante with translator JG Nichols, then talking about his newest book on the subject of his ancestor Josiah Wedgwood.
For our younger audiences there was an event for primary schools with author Rob Lloyd Jones who spoke about writing and his novel Wild Boy, and another fantastically funny author, Jeremy Strong, enthralled the children with stories about the process of writing in his blue shed with a fridge full of chocolate and fruit.
Later we heard from the very entertaining Marina Lewycka, author of several very successful novels including Various Pets Alive and Dead and A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian. Malcolm Gluck’s audience enjoyed a glass of wine whilst hearing him discuss his new book Chateau Lafite 1953 and Other Stories. Alison Moore, the winner of the McKitterick prize, was insightful, and Saturday finished with biographer Claire Tomalin telling us fascinating tales about Dickens and Queen Victoria.
Beautiful weather on the Sunday seemed appropriate for a day full of poetry including workshops for children and adults, the poetry café and an open mic event in The Green Dragon which was very well attended. The Hiscox Young Authors’ event gave Peter Hobbs and Sarah Butler a chance to discuss their wonderful novels and the writing process, whilst playwright David Edgar spoke about the poetry of plays in an inspiring theatre masterclass. Crime-writers Laura Wilson and Andrew Martin had their event in The Merchant’s House, which seemed fitting, and they were followed by two wonderful story-tellers, Michèle Roberts and Jo Baker.
Poet and novelist Jackie Kay hooked her audience at the start with vivid readings from Red Dust Road and then drew them in with her warm and immensely likeable style. Writer and broadcaster Kevin Jackson wrapped up events at The Merchant’s House with sketches of the people and events that made 1922 such a pivotal year in modern history. Finally we were honoured to have the Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy close the festival with readings from her work accompanied by musician John Sampson in the stunning setting of the Marlborough College Memorial Hall.
Marlborough Literary Festival 2012
Download 2012 Brochure
The 2012 Marlborough Literary Festival opened with Howard Jacobson, winner of the 2011 Man Booker Prize, who spoke about good writing, literary criticism, and whether characters in novels should be ‘likeable’. He was the LitFest’s first Golding Author, a role in the Festival which highlights Marlborough’s long connection with the Nobel Laureate and Booker Prize winner, William Golding.The opening night was followed by a host of literary events including talks from Michael Frayn, Iain Banks, poet Simon Armitage, Aminatta Forna, Ginny Bailey who won the 2012 McKitterick prize, 2012 Dylan Thomas prize nominee Chibundu Onuzo, Zaiba Malik, Michele Hanson, Bella Bathurst, Susie Parr, Chris Wakling, Stephen May, Nicola Upson, Simon Brett, Moira Young and Judith Kerr.
Publishing was represented by tours of Libanus Press, a book design partnership located in Marlborough, and a team from Capuchin Classics discussed how they select lost classics and produce beautiful books over tea and cakes in the LitFest café. There were creative writing workshops for adults and teenagers, events for school children, and the ever popular poetry slam.