Wimbledon festival adds spring weekend

News - Festivals Thursday, 20 December 2018

Inaugural Spring Weekend Festival in partnership with King’s College School to run in Wimbledon on 15-17 March 2019

Wimbledon BookFest's inaugural spring Festival will feature interviews, talks and debates featuring writers, commentators and thinkers.

Speakers include poet Roger McGough, philosopher Julian Baggini, writer and novelist Fatima Bhutto, broadcaster and author Tim Marshall and historian Peter Frankopan who will be discussing his latest book The New Silk Roads: The Present and Future of the World. There will also be a debate on the private education system between Andrew Halls, Head Master of King’s College School, and social historians Francis Green and David Kynaston. The full programme will be announced in early January.

The Spring Weekend Festival will run in addition to Wimbledon BookFest’s annual ten-day autumn event which takes place in a pop festival site on Wimbledon Common.

Fiona Razvi, festival director, said: "Our audiences continue to grow year on year and this shows there is a huge appetite for the live event. This new partnership with King’s College School allows us to develop the festival further and we are incredibly grateful to the school for supporting this new venture." The spring festival will take place in the new Concert Hall at King’s College School and at historic Southside House (pictured).

The Festival announced record ticket sales for 2018, with an increase of 30% on the previous years’ figures, with over 18,000 people attending - 13,500 tickets sold for public events and an additional 4,500 students participated in the education programme run with schools throughout South West London. Festival headliners included Graham Norton, Pat Barker, Sebastian Faulks, Lionel Shriver, Adam Kay, Yotam Ottolenghi, Shane Warne, Billy Bragg, Cathy Newman, Afua Hirsch and Neil McGregor. The children’s programme featured Michael Rosen¸ Francesca Simon¸ Jessie Burton and Greg James. Wimbledon BookFest 2019 will take place 3-13 October.

Programming for both the spring and autumn festivals is led by Razvi who can be contacted on Fiona.razvi@wimbledonbookfest.org.

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