2020 Cheltenham Literature Festival dates: 2 - 11 October 2020. An unmissable autumn highlight, this year’s pioneering hybrid Festival – combining digital and in-person events – features a unique line-up of the world’s greatest writers, thinkers, performers and dynamic new voices. The Festival will include over 160 events with over 100 broadcast live from Cheltenham’s Town Hall and the Everyman Theatre in front of a socially-distanced live audience.
For the Cheltenham Literature Festival 2020 you can expect...
- Free streamed events on the Cheltenham Festivals website from 2-11 October
- Digital hub with live-streams, audience question and answer sessions plus interactive maps.
Announcing that the world's oldest Literature Festival will take place digitally this year live from Cheltenham, Director of Festivals Ian George said: ”We are recreating the spirit of the Festival online and sharing the joy of books with thousands of people across the globe who can't meet in person in Cheltenham this year.
Since lockdown, when we have all needed culture and creativity more than ever, Cheltenham Festivals has committed to bring its Festivals digitally to homes all over the world, for free. As the COVID-19 crisis means we are faced with losing vital box office income from our biggest Festival of the year, we hope that our devoted audiences and friends will keep donating generously so that we can continue our work.”
The Festival will present 100 live-streamed events with a socially-distanced live audience (government guidance permitting) in Cheltenham Town Hall and the Everyman Theatre. And, in a year when international travel is limited, an innovative series of filmed events with major international names, supported by a global network of festival partners and publishers.
The events will be streamed via the Cheltenham Festivals website through a digital hub, where the audience can interact with speakers and other Festival-goers. Visitors to the hub can navigate the virtual Festival site, browsing in the bookshop and exploring activities for book-lovers of all ages.
The Festival is equipping schools and families to run their own Literature Festival, providing 30 free author events, creative writing challenges, draw-alongs and read-aloud sessions available online from 5-9 October to watch on-demand. Plus eight live-streamed weekend events with best-selling children’s authors, poets and illustrators.
In a new partnership with CLPE, the CLiPPA (CLPE Poetry Award) will be awarded live at the Festival on Friday 9 October, with the shortlist announced on National Poetry Day, Thursday 1 October.
The programme will feature content unique to Cheltenham, presenting some of the biggest names in publishing this autumn. Award-winning authors of fiction and non-fiction will join poets, spoken word artists and new voices to delve into a range of topics including travel and adventure, food and drink, lifestyle, history, art and religion.
Through a continued partnership with The Times and The Sunday Times, expert commentators will consider the political, social and cultural ideas that will shape our future as we navigate a post-Covid world.
Guest curators are award-winning British-Turkish novelist and storyteller Elif Shafak and Shamil Thakrar – co-founder of Dishoom, winner of Best Restaurant in the UK two years running and author of the best-selling Dishoom cookbook.
Click here for the full line up for the Cheltenham Literature Festival 2020.
Sign up for the email newsletter at www.cheltenhamfestivals/literature to be kept informed of the latest news.
* Images show some of the speakers who have attended previous Cheltenham Literature Festivals including Hillary Clinton and David Cameron.
Further info & book: Cheltenhamfestivals.com / 0844 880 8094
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Cheltenham Town Hall and the Everyman Theatre are both located in Cheltenham town centre. There are plenty of council run car parks and privately run car parks in the town centre. For more information visit our Cheltenham parking page.
To avoid traffic, we recommend that you use Cheltenham’s Park & Ride service, this is located at Arle Court (GL51 6SY, near M5 Junction 11) and Cheltenham Racecourse (GL50 4SH). Parking is free, and the service runs every few minutes into the Town Centre; but please note that times vary on Sundays.
Please note: Park & Ride services are not operated by Cheltenham Festivals and do not drop off directly at Festival sites.
Public Transport Directions
Cheltenham Spa is well served by CrossCountry trains, including direct services from many mainline stations including Bristol, Manchester, Leeds, York, Sheffield and Edinburgh. The railway station (GL51 8NP) is located approximately 1 mile from the town centre, and local buses depart into Cheltenham town centre every few minutes.
Stagecoach run regular services locally and to nearby town and villages – for route maps and timetables, visit stagecoachbus.com/cheltenham
National Express Coaches operate services between many major cities and Cheltenham Spa’s Royal Well bus station (GL50 3PD). See the National Express Coaches website for more details.