Host of literary stars revealed for Havant festival line-up

A GOOD READ David Lodge and, inset, Lynne Truss
A GOOD READ David Lodge and, inset, Lynne Truss
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A PUNCTUATION pedant is among the stars of this year’s Havant Literary Festival.

The popular four-day festival, now in its fourth year, continues to attract fine writers from the international stage as well as local authors.

A GOOD READ Lynne Truss

A GOOD READ Lynne Truss

Lynne Truss, author of the phenomenally successful Eats, Shoots and Leaves, will talk about her book on the correct position of commas and semicolons, which has sold more than three million copies worldwide.

The unexpected hit made a star of the author who will be sharing her experiences with book lovers at next month’s festival.

Also on the bill is writer Precious Willams and David Lodge, author of A Man of Parts, a biography of H G Wells.

Wells will also feature as the festival’s historical figure because of his links to Uppark House, in South Harting, where his mother was housekeeper and he was a frequent visitor.

Mark Cocker, author of Birds Britannica, will be in conversation with local naturalist Ralph Hollins.

And international theatre set designer Dick Bird will discuss how he is inspired to create sets from the point of receiving scripts.

Valerie Bird, one of the organisers, said: ‘It’s a fantastic line-up, it will truly be a festival to remember.

‘I’m really looking forward to seeing Lynne Truss, a major author, who is going to be very interesting.

‘And we’ve got people who you wouldn’t normally think of in literary terms. Dick Bird will be fascinating.

‘I believe he will be bringing along some model sets.

‘And Mark Cocker will be extremely interesting. The calibre of guests is very high.’

The festival’s patron, author Stella Duffy, will again be holding a writers workshop, and Shedman – poet John Davies – will be back for a third time, taking poetry commissions in Leigh Park’s Greywell Precinct.

There will also be a celebration in words and music of the King James Bible, in its 400th year, at St Faith’s Church, in West Street.

This year’s national poetry competition closes on August 12 so there is still time to enter by going to the festival website and downloading an entry form.

Havant Literary Festival takes place from September 22 to 25.

The complete timetable will be available from mid August.

Tickets can be purchased from The Spring, East Street, Havant, on (023) 9247 2700 and thespring.co.uk.

For more information go to havantlitfest.org.uk.