Ilkley Literature Festival 2018 kicks off on Friday 28th September, with another stellar line-up. Authors such as Bake Off winner Nadiya Hussain and comedian Susan Calman will grace the stages of Ilkley over the course of the event. Read on to find out about more of the acts coming to LS29, as well as ticket information for the festival.
It is also the first festival since a host of stars hit town to make a film about the event. Ilkley is a fictional dark comedy about murderous events at Ilkley Lit Fest, and will come out next year.
Ilkley Literature Festival 2018 Headline Events
As usual, there are hundreds of events to enjoy during the festival, but it’s the headline acts that grab the attention. Festival organisers have pulled it out of the bag again this year, with a selection of must-see events. Here are some of the biggest names that have signed up.
Nadiya Hussain: Bake Me a Celebration Story
- Thursday 20th September, 6:30-7:30pm
- Kings Hall
- £20/£16 (including book), £10/£6 (without book)
West Yorkshire’s Nadiya Hussain won The Great British Bake Off in 2015. Since then, she has become a TV personality, columnist and author. She was even named as one of the 500 most influential British people in 2017.
Nadiya, who lives in Roundhay in Leeds, has written a follow up to her Bake Me a Story book, called Bake Me a Celebration Story. It includes recipes that fit with festivities around the world, and the stories that go with them.
This performance actually takes place a week or so before the Ilkley Literature Festival 2018 officially kicks off, but it is not to be missed. There is even a cake baking competition in honour of Nadiya’s visit to the Kings Hall.
- Sunday 30th September, 4:30-5:30pm
- Grammar School, Leeds
Cricketer Moeen Ali is a fascinating character and he’ll document his rise from a tough upbringing in Birmingham to impressing at the top level of his sport. Moeen is still in contention for an England place, making this a rare opportunity to learn more about the life of a current elite athlete.
Ali is known for his social conscience and for not shying away from expressing his views, so this should be fascinating. The event takes place at Leeds Grammar School, but is still part of Ilkley Festival.
- Friday 5th October, 2:30-3:30pm
- Kings Hall
Last year, Alan Bennett opened the festival in what was probably the most Yorkshire event ever. This year, the county’s most famous son returns to read from his work and talk about his career.
Obviously you will need to get in quickly to snap up tickets for this, with Festival Friends and Patrons having already had the chance to buy them. It’s a first come, first served deal, with a maximum of two tickets per person when sales open to everyone.
Susan Calman: Sunny Side Up
- Friday 12th October, 7:30-8:30pm
- Kings Hall
Comedian and writer Susan Calman is a regular on the stand-up circuit and Radio 4, but she boosted her profile with a stint on Strictly Come Dancing in 2017. Sunny Side Up is her second book and is about bringing people together to spread joy and eradicate negativity.
It’s a bold mission, but it is much needed at the moment, and this she looks set to be a joyous celebration. Calman is a true wordsmith, making this look a sure bet to put a smile on your face as the autumn draws in on Wharfedale.
When Do Ilkley Literature Festival 2018 Tickets Go on Sale?
Ticket sales for Ilkley Literature Festival 2018 open on Tuesday 28th August at 10am.
Other Headline Shows
Amongst the other headline shows at Ilkey Lit Fest 2018 are Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy, historian Dan Snow and retail expert Mary Portas.
Poet and author Michael Rosen brings a show about the rebellious nature of early 20th century children’s literature. In addition, activist and food expert Jack Monroe teams up with writer and Bake Off winner Ruby Tandoh for a show about new ways to approach how we see food.
Ilkley Literature Children’s Festival
Ilkley Lit Fest is not just for the grown-ups, there is also a thriving children’s festival too. The line-up this year, as with the main event, is extremely strong.
Tracey Beaker author Jacqueline Wilson rocks up at the Kings Hall on Thursday 4th October to talk about her new book. Her heroine is now a mother, and Jacqueline will be on hand to divulge some exciting details about the latest edition in the series.
Fans of Horrible Histories will want to book to see either Terry Deary at Kings Hall on Saturday 13th October. The books, which have also become a successful CBBC TV series, are hugely popular, and Terry is in Ilkley to talk about the Georgians. This event celebrates 25 years of Horrible Histories.
Ilkley Literature Festival Fringe 2018
Running alongside Ilkley Literature Festival 2018 is the festival fringe. These are free events, and mostly take place at the Ilkley Playhouse. Each has some connection to the Yorkshire area, and activities range from poetry nights to flashmob dancing to swim hiking in the River Wharfe.
I am performing at the Playhouse on Thursday 4th October, presenting the Bewildered Family Guide to Yorkshire. This is based on a series of videos exploring various towns in the White Rose County that I make for my dad blog, Bewildered Dad. It’s like a mini tour of the county, with videos and the chance to win prizes. Come along and watch at the Playhouse on Thursday 4th October at 9pm.