Book festival coming to Linlithgow

Tam Dyell will be appearing at the festival
Tam Dyell will be appearing at the festival

Book lovers will be able to meet established authors and poets at the upcoming Further From festival in Linlithgow.

Over two days in February, there will be a whole host of famous faces appearing at the event, inlcuding Liz Lochhead, Jim Crumley, Shirley McKay, Nick Sharratt, Ron Butlin and Tam Dalyell.

Scottish landscape and nature painter, Leo du Feu will also be at the festival

Scottish landscape and nature painter, Leo du Feu will also be at the festival

The festival has been planned by Far From the Madding Crowd book store in Linlithgow, and festival co–ordinator Sally Pattle said there is a distinct local connection to many of the authors taking part.

She said: “We’re very excited to be launching the first ever Further From Festival. In our first year we’re absolutely delighted that established authors will be participating, along with some newer names on the Scottish literary scene, and a focus on local authors.

“Over two days we are hosting a poetry slam, an open mic night and a book fair, as well as dedicated author events for adults and children.

“We are being supported by events students on the HNC course at West Lothian College and we are delighted to have volunteers from the course helping out with everything from technical support to box office staff and marketing.”

Tam Dalyell, former Linlithgow MP, will be appearing at the festival to speak about his long polictical career alongside local historian and old friend Bruce Jamieson.

A poetry slam featuring Liz Lochhead, Michael Pedersen, William Letford and Jenni Fagan, who are said to be “incredible performers”, will be joined by local youngster Ian McCartney (17) who was named as one of Foyle’s young poets of 2015. He is a student at Linlithgow Academy and works part–time at Far From the Madding Crowd. There will be an open mic session following the slam and drinks are included in the ticket price.

Illustrator Nick Sharratt will also be hosting a session at the festival, and is most well–known for his work on the Jacqueline Wilson and Julia Donaldson novels.

There will also be a book fair on Saturday, February 6 from 10am – 4pm and a range of local authors will be on hand to sign copies of their books.

All the events are taking place in Queen Margaret Hall, on Bo’ness Road, Linlithgow over the weekend beginning Saturday, February 6 and a full event listing can be found at www.maddingcrowdlinlithgow.co.uk.

Sally said she hopes this is the start of something great as it gives local people a chance to get out and meet each other in the dark winter months. She said there is something to suit everyone in what should be a great cultural event.

Tickets are available now from Far From The Madding Crowd, and you can either pop in to the shop on Linlithgow High Street, phone 01506 845509, or email sally@maddingcrowdlinlithgow.co.uk.