Festival aims to be a major tourist magnet

ORGANISERS of the second annual Cleckheaton Literature Festival want the event to become a major tourist destination.

The town already has an internationally-renowned folk music jamboree which pulls crowds.

Its success, like the Mirfield Agricultural Show, is in appealing to interests no matter where visitors may live. The festival, held over two weeks in April and May and themed around young people, has the same ambition. A line-up topped by BBC DJ Andy Kershaw has been announced in the hope of attracting visitors from across the district and beyond.

Just one of many attractions is a creative writing workshop with children’s author Martyn Bedford. His debut teen novel, Flip, was nominated for a host of awards in 2011. And like Flip, Martyn’s follow-up, Never Ending, was listed for the prestigious Carnegie Medal. His creative writing class is on Sunday, May 1 (1pm-3pm).

Event founder Karen Naylor said: “Our first festival had one full family-friendly day. But this year we are expanding opportunities for young people across the festival with various talks and workshops.”

Among the activities are new theatre shows commissioned via Dewsbury-based Creative Scene.

For adults there is a crime writing workshop with author Alison Taft, themed around how to commit the perfect murder.

Karen added: “We want to attract people across the generations from the local community and further afield. We are also targeting local writers, as we wish to be known as supporting our own arts community.”

CONFIRMED events for the 2016 Cleckheaton Literature Festival:

Thursday April 21

10-12 Ian Pattison - short story workshop

1-3 Clive Dale - children’s story-building class

1-3 Ian Pattison - horror/fantasy workshop

4-6 Alison Taft - committing the perfect murder: crime writing workshop

7-9 Crime panel with Leigh Russell, Alison Taft and Helen Cadbury

Friday April 22

10-12 John Irving-Clarke - children’s poetry workshop

1-3 Justina Robson - young adult workshop

4-6 tbc

7-9 Luke Wright (performance poet) - What I Learned from Johnny Bevan

Saturday April 23

10-12 Gillian Rogerson - self-publishing workshop

1-3 Doctor Who Panel with Mark Wright (other writer/s tbc)

4-6 A Firm of Poets 7-9 tbc

Sunday April 24

10-12 Ian C Douglas - world-building workshop

1-3 Ian C Douglas - young adult workshop

4-6 tbc

Thursday April 28

10-12 James Nash - schools poetry event

10-12 Steve Moore - creative writing workshop (structure and introduction to a story’s principal characters)

1-3 Jason Hewitt - author talk (new book Devastation Road)

4-6 Steve Moore - author talk (road to publication, self-published book The Washington Adventure)

7-9 tbc

Friday April 29

10-12 Jason Hewitt - creative writing workshop (Building characters - 10 practical steps)

1-3 tbc

4-6 Barbara Henderson - short fiction masterclass

7-9 tbc

Saturday April 30

10-12 Barbara Henderson - writing for children masterclass

10-12 Patricia Duncker - masterclass (new book Sophie and the Sibyl)

12-1 Theatre performances - The Love Project and Dough

1-3 Alison Lock - author talk (new book Maysun and the Wingfish)

1-3 Patricia Duncker - masterclass

3-4 Theatre performances - The Love Project & Dough

4-6 Julie Pryke - Telling Tales

7-9 Crime Panel with David Mark and Nick Quantrill (interviewed by James Nash)

Sunday May 1

11-12 Horatio Clare - author talk (Aubrey & the Terrible Yoot)

1-3 Martyn Bedford - creative writing workshop

4-6 tbc

7-until-late Andy Kershaw in conversation (Cleckheaton Town Hall)

The venue for events is Cleckheaton Library unless stated.

Tickets from www.ticketsource.co.uk/cleckheatonliteraturefestival.

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