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  • Writer's pictureIan Brooks

UK and Ireland Literary Festivals - June 2023

Updated: Jun 30, 2023


Attending literary festivals can be a great way to network, learn and gain new experiences in the literary world. As well as immersing yourself in topics you are interested in, there are plenty of talks and workshops on disciplines you are not well versed in that can help you to develop and hone your skillset.


Here are some of the key literary festivals happening across the UK and Ireland in June 2023.



Having enjoyed a successful first run last year, Kite Festival gears up for its 2023 edition at Kirtlington Park in Oxfordshire. The event offers a unique blend of music and discussion that embraces the current Zeitgeist. High profile authors, poets and figures will provide discussion while a number of bands will perform across three stages.


Sir John Major, Dame Joan Collins, Alastair Campbell, David Baddiel, Simon Sinek, and George the Poet are just some of the names who will be in attendance along with music acts such as Hot Chip and Suede.



The day of June 16th, 1904, has forever been immortalised thanks to the writings of James Joyce in his 1922 novel, Ulysses. The festival celebrates James Joyce and Ulysses with numerous different celebrations including readings, performances, guided walks and even dishes of the food mentioned in the novel.


It is a much loved and much respected event. Something that people should experience at least once in their lives!



The thirteenth edition of the Belfast Book festival runs from the 13th to the 18th of June. Attendees can enjoy a wide range of events and workshops falling under a variety of headings. Whether it’s Book launches, Professional development, Crime, Fiction or any other of a multitude of topics, the Belfast Book Festival has you covered.


Events of note include the Belfast Book Festival Funfair, Fiction Writing with Mythology led by Yan Ge and Making Stories with Paul Howard.



The Dalkey Book Festival invites a star-studded lineup to its programme, headlined by Tom Hanks and Bono. Other speakers include Ruby Wax, Brian Cox, The Edge, Dylan Moran, Fintan O’Toole and John Banville as well as many more. There are also workshops for younger attendees such as the young writers workshop with Sarah Webb.


The Festival is sure to provide plenty of entertainment and discussion for all ages.



Entering into its eleventh edition, the Festival of Writing & Ideas will take place at Borris House, Co. Carlow. The festival “promises a weekend of stimulating dialogue and discourse” as it invites individuals from all over the world to its programme.


Speakers include Lord David Puttnam, Ian McEwan, Jeremy Irons, Sinead Cusack, David Baddiel, Imelda May and Katherine Rundell.


Spanning ten whole days, the ninth annual Bradford Literature Festival welcomes guests from literature, poetry, business, politics, science and history, film and TV and many more. There is a wealth of free festival events for families too that can’t be missed.


Speakers include Angela Rayner, Jeremy Corbyn, Jonathan Stroud, Sir Lenny Henry, Sir Michael Palin, Sir Michael Parkinson and Reginald D. Hunter.



Launched in 2015, the Wealden Literary Festival claims to be “an antidote to our often screen-dominated, fast-paced lives…” It seeks to unearth nature and creative potential and, with Sir Michael Morpurgo as festival patron, they certainly achieve just that.


Festival-goers can enjoy a unique blend of creative courses including a clothes mending workshop, spinning, seed paper making and much more. There are also many children’s and writing talks from the likes of Tom Holland, Pari Thompson and Sir Michael Morpurgo himself.



The Barnes Children’s Literature Festival is one of the biggest children’s literature events on the calendar. The Festival boasts some amazing speakers including Sir Lenny Henry, Axel Scheffler, Cressida Cowell, AF Steadman, Chris Riddell, Dr Maggie Alderin-Pocock and much, much more!

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