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Countdown to LitFest '17 - tickets now on sale

Last night (13 July) at the White Horse Bookshop in Marlborough the countdown to Litfest '17 commenced.

Chair of the LitFest Committee addressed the audience of volunteers to announce the launch of the programme which features an ever stronger line-up of speakers, headed by Will Self, Frank Gardner, David Mitchell to name but three.

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The Bees are coming: author announced for Marlborough LitFest’s Big Town Read

Laline Paull Laline Paull Marlborough LitFest in partnership with The Reading Agency has chosen author Laline Paull for their 2017 Big Town Read.

The Big Town Read is back for this year's festival by popular demand - giving local book clubs the chance to read the chosen author's book in advance of the LitFest (28 September-1 October) so it can be discussed in a Q&A session with the author.

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Oh Horrid Henry! Children's author Francesca Simon joins LitFest's 2017 line-up

Marlborough LitFest has announced that the bestselling children's author Francesca Simon is joining the line-up for its 2017 line-up - its eighth year (28 September-1 October).

Francesca Simon is universally renowned for her phenomenally popular Horrid Henry series - the books and CDs have sold over 20 million copies in the UK alone and are published in 27 countries.

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Marlborough LitFest branches out with a June day celebrating summer & nature writing

Fiona ReynoldsFiona ReynoldsFiona Reynolds' message will chime with many people who live in and around Marlborough and enjoy its special countryside.   She will be part of a new venture, quite separate from the main festival weekend, that Marlborough LitFest is arranging to celebrate June's start of summer with a day devoted to nature writing - Saturday, June 3.

This will be held at the White Horse Bookshop and has been made possible by the LitFest's lead sponsors Brewin Dolphin. 

The programme includes four speakers and - at 1.30pm - the announcement of the winner of the Richard Jefferies Nature Writing Prize - now sponsored by White Horse Bookshop.  This prize is named after Wiltshire's celebrated and ground-breaking Victorian writer and naturalist.

The four speakers are:

Fiona Reynolds has been Director General of both The National Trust and The Council for the Protection of Rural England (CPRE). Her new book, The Fight for Beauty, demonstrates her tireless enthusiasm for the countryside and her passion for conservation.

John Lewis-Stempel is a farmer and historian who lives in Herefordshire on land his family has farmed since the 14th century. He is the author of Meadowland and The Running Hare : The Secret Life of Farmland. He is the winner of the 2015 Wainwright Prize for Nature and Travel Writing.

Rosy Hardy is a garden designer and founder of Hardy's Cottage Garden Plants. She's won many gold medals at RHS Chelsea and Hampton Court Palace flower shows.  She is well known as an inspirational speaker on gardening and design. After her talk Rosy will be signing copies of her new book, Rosy Hardy - 25 Years of Chelsea.  

   Rosy HartyRosy Harty     

Simon Cooper's new book The Otter's Tale recounts his special relationship with a family of otters. Anyone who heard Simon talking about his previous book Life of a Chalkstream at last year's LitFest will know what a treat it is to hear him speak.

All the details of the times and ticketing can be found here - where there's also a link to the LitFest website.

And for diaries: the 2017 Marlborough LitFest will run over the weekend September 28-to-October 1.

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