Enthralling! This is the word that best sums up the sixth Bewdley Book Week that ran between 5th to 11th September 2016.
From the first event, Marlaine Delargy’s fascinating insight into translating Swedish Scandi-Noir fiction, to the Friday afternoon, when Dr Wilson Wall had his audience spellbound by his talk on the search for human chromosomes, the weekday programme enthralled and inspired.
Kim Hurst’s infectious enthusiasm for herbs and their hidden properties; a poetry day full of wit, wordplay, pun and humour featuring nationally acclaimed poets Rob Barratt and Emma Purshouse supported by the Bewdley Bards; the inspiring 80-year working life of farming hero, Joan Bomford; pop legend Dave Bartram’s riveting account of his ‘life in the fast lane to breakdown on the hard shoulder’; Fen Flack’s illuminating story about bringing her fictional life of Edmund II into print; all these contributed to make the sixth annual Book Week memorable in so many ways.
And we shouldn’t gloss over the contributions from event facilitators: BBC’s Kate Justice and the music world’s Neville Farmer.
For many, though, the highlight has to be the Friday evening when acclaimed novelist Louis de Bernières joined The Bookshop Band on stage to read from his latest novel and poetry collections and take us on a magical musical journey inspired by books.
In the Saturday afternoon ‘cakey tea’ event ‘choc-lit’ romantic novelist Carole Matthews talked with Heart FM’s Rachel New about the background to her writing. She also gave fans the opportunity for a close-up chat.
This relaxed and fun formula is unique to Book Week and is fast gaining a reputation on the country’s litfest scene.
Book Week also supports local schools through a writing competition and by providing a visiting writer who this year was the widely-published poet Michael Thomas.
Regular Book Week favourites; the Open Mic Poetry evening (hosted by The Cock & Magpie); Film of the Book Night; and the Literary Quiz Dinner (hosted by The Hop Pole Inn) completed the programme.
The week’s events were attended by over 500 people and brought visitors to the town from as far afield as Surrey. Bewdley is earning a reputation among authors for being a lovely town to visit (which we knew) and having lovely, welcoming audiences (which is pleasing to hear!).
Have a look at the gallery of images that give a hint of the atmosphere in the events. If you were there you might spot yourself in a picture.
Details of Bewdley Book Week 2017 will start appearing at the beginning of the year. We hope you’ll come to see us.