Something for everyone in first ‘friendly festival’

Something for everyone in first ‘friendly festival’

THE line-up for the first Cleckheaton Literature Festival offers something for everyone.

Big names like Joanne Harris and Andy Kershaw have grabbed headlines – but there is plenty more on offer.

The four-day event starts on Thursday, May 7 at 10am, with a Bronte walk to Whitechapel Church.

Walkers will meet the woman who discovered the grave of a long-lost relative of the famous literary clan.

Children’s poetry and a sci-fi and fantasy writing workshop at the library kicks off Friday, May 8.

West End Park is the venue for a children’s story time the following day, while travel writer Horatio Clare closes the festival on Sunday, May 10.

In between there are meet-the-author events, performance poetry and a look at TV screenwriting.

Festival director Karen Nayor, of the Cleckheaton Writers’ Group, said the aim is to cater for as many interests as possible.

She said: “Ours will not be highbrow and fanciful, but a friendly festival for the whole family.

“We want to celebrate the sheer pleasure of reading, of getting lost in that other world and being transformed by it.”

Joanne Harris will discuss her new book, The Gospel of Loki, at Cleckheaton Library at 1pm on Saturday, May 9.

Broadcaster Andy Kershaw brings tales from his career to Whitcliffe Mount Business and Enterprise College at 7.30pm that night.

His music journalism has taken him to some of the world’s most dangerous places.

Karen, herself an aspiring novelist, added: “More seriously, we are aiming to bring the love of reading to those not normally engaged.

“We see this building into an opportunity for families to learn of, or revisit, the delights of reading and reading together.”

Some events are free , while for others there is a small charge. Tickets are available from

See http://cleckheatonlitfest. for more details or on Facebook and Twitter (@LitfestCleck).


Travel writer’s seafaring tales bring the curtain down on four days of events

AWARD-winning travel writer Horatio Clare will bring the festival to a close.

He is set to talk about his latest book, Down To The Sea In Ships, at the town’s library on Sunday, May 10.

The book features unusual tales from his time travelling the world with crews on giant cargo ships.

Horatio, creative writing fellow at the University of Liverpool, is a contributor to BBC Radio 4.

He won the Somerset Maugham Award in 2007 and has also been Foreign Press Association Travel Writer of the Year.

A Daily Telegraph travel writer, also published by the likes of the Sunday Times, he is not the only major figure on the bill.

Aside from Joanne Harris and Andy Kershaw, there is also Doctor Who author Mark Wright.

He will be at the library at 3.30pm on Saturday, May 9, with an interactive event that ‘Whovians’ are sure to love.

Mark has written many novels, short stories, comic strips and audiobooks about the Time Lord.

His latest separate teen thrillers, The Corridor, Deadly Mission and Ghost Bell, are out now.



All events at the library unless stated.

Thursday May 7

10am-noon, Bronte trail (outdoor event).

10am-noon, Screenwriting workshop with Steve Moore.

1.30-3pm, Meet author and playwright Jason Hewitt.

4-6pm, Creative writing workshop author Martyn Bedford.

6.30pm, Poetry night with Talking Zebras and the Cleckheaton Library Poets.

7.30pm, Talk by author Lauren Owen

Friday May 8

10am-noon, Children’s poetry with poet and novelist John Irving Clarke.

1-3pm, Sci-fi/fantasy creative writing workshop with Justina Robson.

3.30-5.30pm, Performance poetry with Luke Wright.

6.30-8pm, Crime panel with Helen Cadbury, Alison Taft and Leigh Russell.

Saturday May 9

10-11am, Children’s activity with children’s author Gillian Rogerson.

11am & 3.30pm, Children spin a silly story and story trail (West End Park).

1-3pm, Joanne Harris.

1-3pm, Tell Tales outdoor interactive event (West End Park).

3.30-5.30pm, Dr Who event with author Mark Wright.

7.30pm to late, Andy Kershaw (Whitcliffe Mount School).

Sunday May 10

10am-noon, Life writing workshop with author Alison Lock.

1-3pm, Sci-fi/fantasy creative writing workshop with Ian C Douglas.

3.30-5.30pm, Horatio Clare.

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