Literary Passions and Country Pleasures

Literary Passions and Country Pleasures

Dorchester Literary Festival 18-22 October 2017

Now in its third year, the Dorchester Literary Festival is organised by writers for all those who enjoy the written word. Our aim is to give you the opportunity to hear stimulating talks and discussions by leading authors in a relaxed and beautiful setting.

Having attended the festival in 2016 I was keen to get involved with this year’s event and had the pleasure of chatting with Paul Atterbury, Co- director.

Paul Atterbury

Paul Atterbury

Antiques expert, lecturer, museum curator as well as writer Paul is best known as a specialist on The Antiques Roadshow. He has written over thirty books on subjects ranging from ceramics, architecture, travel, railways, canals and postcards to the First and Second World Wars. His most recent book, World War One in 100 Family Treasures, was the result of an appeal by The Antiques Roadshow for contributions for a special programme filmed in the Somme.

Paul’s fevour for antiques is enhanced by the stories that lie behind the objects and he is a perfect fit for the task of promoting the Dorset celebration of all things inspiring. He told me “our aim is to encourage people to read the stories, understand the history behind them and seek to fill the gaps in their education.”

The diversity of the programme means there is something for everyone from “otters to bomb disposal” which is the tag line for the event. There are plenty of famous authors of fiction and non-fiction to be heard and talks on wildlife, crime fiction and even cricket. The guests include Tracey Chevalier, Val McDermid, AN Wilson and Henry Blofeld: as I said something for everyone.

Paul added “Set in Dorset’s county town in the heart of Hardy country, we have a strong literary legacy and a hugely loyal audience, but we also see it as our mission to bring books to those less inclined.”

Looking forward to a diverse programme, I shall be attending Paul’s talk with the veteran cricket commentator, Henry Blofeld, as well as hearing Fergal Keane’s experiences of the Irish War.

Literary festivals are springing up all over the country and can be as varied as the locations in which they are held. Dorchester with its rural rolling hills and wild seascapes covers many facets from farming to fighting, ancient sites to modern architecture.

This is a very good festival to visit as you will be able to get close to the speakers and spend time in this beautiful county. Go to the Festival website for more information on events. Check with the Dorchester Tourist information centre for tickets and accommodation and look forward to a treat in this most friendly of towns.

Dorchester Coast