This weekend I’m going to be in Maryport, Cumbria. The Maryport LitFest – held at the Senhouse Roman Museum on the clifftop above the town – has grown from tiny beginnings to become an important event in the calendar. Many people from the Lakes, and the north-west generally, now come there each November for a weekend of events with some of the best national and local writers. I’ll be speaking there. Why not come and join us for this intimate and inspiring Festival?
I’m going to make up the rest of this post from some highlights of the Festival programme. If you’re interested and can make it, come and enjoy some of the events. There are creative writing workshops, a poetry forum and other events besides what I’m selecting to list below. The Museum is at CA15 6JD, and for the full programme, or to book, go to http://www.senhousemuseum.co.uk/ – or
phone 01900 816 168.
Friday 8 Nov, 7 pm: Festival launch by Melvyn Bragg. Lord Bragg will be opening the 2013 festival; after which he will talk about his new novel Grace and Mary, described by Salley Vickers of the Independent as ‘a novel which beautifully conveys how the past is a continuum that constantly feeds our consciousness of the present’. £15.00 – not included in season ticket (includes light refreshments)
Saturday 9 Nov, 10.30 a.m.: Keith Richardson – The Greta. Keith lives in the Lake District and is an award-winning author. His Jack’s Yak won the 2012 Lakeland Book of the Year Award. He will read from and talk about his latest book about the River Greta that flows through Keswick. £6.00
Sat 9 Nov, 12 Noon: Eric Robson – Wet! These days best known as chairman of Radio 4’s Gardeners’ Question Time, author, broadcaster, Chairman of the Wainwright Society and sheep farmer in Wasdale, Eric Robson will talk about all things watery and his new book Foreign Parts.£6.00
Sat 9 Nov, 2.30 pm: John Pepper – Cry Down River. One stormy winter’s night Ruth France accidentally drives into a flooded river. John’s book is his love letter to Ruth following her tragic death. ‘A brave, honest and beautiful book’. £6.00
Sat 9 Nov., 4 p.m.: Steven Matthews – A Lazy Tour in Cumberland. Winner of this year’s Lakeland Book of the Year Award, Steven’s entertaining new book covers a trip by Charles Dickens and Wilkie Collins around Cumberland in 1847. He will talk about their time in Allonby and Maryport. Steven is an author, publisher and proprietor of the successful Bookcase and Bookends independent bookshops . £6.00
Sat 9 Nov, 8pm: Kathleen Jones – Norman Nicholson. Kathleen Jones was born and brought up in the Lake District, and lived in the Middle East and Africa for ten years before coming back to live in Cumbria. She is the award-winning author of seven biographies, a novel and a collection of poetry and was Royal Literary Fund Fellow at Lancaster University. Kathleen will be introduced by Irving Hunt (a friend of Nicholson’s) and will talk about her new biography of the poet. £10.00
Sunday 10 Nov, 3 pm: Catherine Kay – Wordsworth and the sea. In this session she will explore the sea’s impact on Wordsworth both personally (the tragedy of his brother’s loss at sea) and creatively. £6.00
Sunday 10 Nov, 4 pm: Grevel Lindop – Literary history of the Cumbrian Coast. Poet, biographer and author of The Literary Guide to the Lake District Grevel will talk about literary connections with the CumbrianCoast and stories surrounding the many holy wells to be found in West Cumbria. £6.00
Plus writing workshops, poetry forum, book sales and signings and much more!