Budleigh Salterton, Literary Festival, Devon

Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival

17 – 20 September 2015

The full programme for the 2015 Festival will be announced in early summer. We look forward to sharing it with you.


Ann Widdecombe : The Dancing Detective
Friday 12 June 2015 : 6.30pm

Ann Widdecombe has written her first detective novel The Dancing Detective and will give a talk at St Peter’s Church on 12th June at 6.30 pm.

Doors open: 6pm

Tickets cost £12 and include a glass of wine.

Tickets may be bought in person or over the phone from the Information Centre in Budleigh Salterton. The centre is open 10am – 4pm Monday to Saturday and telephone bookings can be paid for by credit card.

Telephone: 01395 445 275
Information Centre, Fore Street, Budleigh Salterton, East Devon, EX9 6NG

Ann Widdecombe, The Dancing Detectice, crime, thriller, novel

Photo: Poppy Berry

2014 Festival Highlights

A huge thank you to everyone who supported our 2014 Festival. We had a wonderful time and were overjoyed with the response from authors, hosts, friends and audiences. There were lots of special moments throughout the weekend from Kate Atkinson and Hilary Mantel reading exclusive extracts from their forthcoming books, to Michael Morpurgo singing to us. Enjoy watching some of the highlights in our Festival Film (below).

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The Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival is at the centre of local, national and international debate featuring some of the most intelligent, creative, and cutting edge thinkers alive today.

Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival provides unique and imaginative opportunities for audiences to experience high quality live literature via an annual festival format

The Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival takes place in September each year.

Organisers of the sixth annual Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival are still buzzing after yet another successful festival with top authors such as Kate Atkinson, Michael Morpurgo, Kate Adie, James Lovelock and Hilary Mantel.

The impressive line-up this year saw family favourite Michael Morpurgo reading an exclusive extract from his new novel, Listen to the Moon, and much loved Kate Atkinson chose Budleigh audiences to be the first in the UK to hear an extract from her new novel, A God in Ruins, not due to be published until May 2015.

The festival, which took place from 18th – 21st September, attracted visitors from all over the country, with many events selling out weeks ahead of the festival. Over 5,000 tickets were sold in total with many being sold online via the festival website.

The streets of Budleigh were once again full to the brim during the course of the festival and Budleigh townsfolk and traders alike went out of their way to join in with the festivities and lend a hand where one was needed. Visitors to the town were sure to notice many of the shop fronts hosting special displays to highlight author events and festival activities.

The 2014 line up featured an alluring list of exciting authors, scientists, politicians, broadcasters and journalists who filled Budleigh’s streets with enthusiasm and friendly smiles, whilst book fans and fellow writers wondered between author events and the festival marquee.

Spotted amongst the crowds this year was best-selling and prize-winning author Paddy Ashdown, popular comedian and writer Mark Watson, No 1 international bestselling author Kate Mosse, celebrated dance critic, broadcaster and journalist Judith Mackrell and Hon. President, double Man Booker Prize winner Dame Hilary Mantel DBE.

One of this year’s most popular events was the creative workshop ‘Turning Your Life into Fiction’ with author, cultural commentator and broadcaster Louise Doughty. Equally popular was the sell-out event with Hilary Mantel and Mike Poulton, where they discussed the sell out adaptations of novels Wolf Hall and Bring up the Bodies at the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford and the Aldwych Theatre in London.

Alongside the wide variety of literary talks, visitors had the opportunity to meet their favourite authors at a series of book signing events in the Festival Marquee on The Green.

Commenting on the success of the festival, Artistic Director Sarah-Jane Roberts said: “We worked hard this year to secure a wide range of authors, journalists, scientists, politicians, economists, rising stars and historians. We aim to appeal to people of all ages and interests and this year we did just that, with several events designed specifically for children and families. One of the festival highlights was Michael Morpurgo who had the audience crying, laughing and thinking about life, love, death, war childhood, adulthood and the power of stories and storytelling. It was wonderful to see an audience so captivated and moved by his words and delighted that he chose them, the Budleigh audience, to be the first to hear an exclusive extract from his new novel.

She continued: “Each year this festival goes from strength to strength and it’s a real pleasure to be involved. The atmosphere really is electric and it’s all down to the people within the community. We can’t thank the people of Budleigh enough for embracing this festival with open arms. Now it’s time to start planning for 2015 and we can’t wait to see all the regular faces and new faces about the town next year.”

Some reaction to the festival on Twitter:

@Lindagrant: I commend @BudleighLitFest for putting on a terrific festival, pleasure to be there with @_Sadie_Jones_

@_Sadie_Jones_: @BudleighLitFest @lindasgrant Had a great time. Lovely event. Thank you very much indeed.

@EricaWgnr: such great events @BudleighLitFest with @NaomiWoodBooks @jesskatbee – to name but two – and…

@judithmackrell: Thanks again to @BudleighLitFest for enchanting festival experience and to @MsRachelCooke for asking such excellent questions

@MsRachelCooke: Sad to leave @BudleighLitFest Thank you for having me. (Still the best small literary festival ever)

@alisonbarrow: Book PRs. Can strongly recommend @BudleighLitFest – top team, great audiences, lively discussion, good book sales with @WaterstonesEHS

@GJames85: Enjoyed @BudleighLitFest this weekend; great talks by Kate Atkinson & Hilary Mantel

@Cozza2107: Beautiful @BudleighLitFest #books #shops @BudleighB #river #beach #cliffs Hope there’s a Literary Festival next year!

@PebblesBandB: What a treat to see #KateAdie @BudleighLitFest, wonderful talk on the role of women in #ww1 #womenshistory

@RosehillRooms: wonderful event with #KateAdie @BudleighLitFest fantastic ending to a great festival – already looking forward to next year

Long term sponsors Everys Solicitors were once again delighted to be involved with the four day festival. Bruce Brooker, Everys’ commercial director, said: “We are long-term supporters of the Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival and we enjoy inviting our clients from the area to attend its events. This year, we hosted a reception in the main marquee on the Saturday ahead of the Michael Morpurgo and Hilary Mantel events.”

The Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival was founded in 2008 by Susan Ward. Her vision was to attract acclaimed authors, playwrights and poets, whilst retaining accessible ticket prices and a friendly atmosphere.

Interested in sponsoring the Budleigh Salterton Literary Festival?

Festival Sponsors

Everys Solicitors
Palmers Whitton & Laing
Devon County Council
SimCoe House

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Christine Shoji, Becky Godwin-Coombs and 10 others like this

Collette CallanLove the photos6 months ago   ·  1

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Just a few pictures of the festival this year. Thank you to everyone who helped, supported and joined in with this years event. ... See MoreSee Less

Just a few pictures of the festival this year. Thank you to everyone who helped, supported and joined in with this years event.

Just a few pictures of the festival this year. Thank you to everyone who helped, supported and joined in with this years event.

A wonderful picture of Philip Reeve and Sarah McIntyre after their performance at the festival. ... See MoreSee Less

Thanks Sarah McIntyre & Philip Reeve. It was brilliant. So entertaining. They put on an amazing show. Thanks guys and thanks for showing constant support for our library, offering future help. We will...

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Thank you everyone for your help and support this weekend. We hope you have loved it as much as we have! ... See MoreSee Less

Budleigh Food & Drink Festival, Jennie Milverton and 8 others like this

Lesley LawnGreat to see Budleigh come to life, thanks to all those who made it happen!8 months ago   ·  3
Pauline IddonWasn't it just a great day today! A morning of Linda Grant and Sadie Jones. A lunchtime break of boats, books and shimmering sea. An afternoon rounded off with Hilary Mantel and her bold collection of short stories, including 'The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher.'(Dated August 6th 1983)8 months ago   ·  2
Pam YoungGlad to see you are still getting everyone organise:. Hope you are all well. Xx8 months ago

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