Lancashire's literature festival, publisher and development agency

Translate, Create, Debate! Literary Dispatches from the Peripheries of Europe

Friday 29th March 11 am + 1pm Venue: Reading Room, The Storey, Meeting House Lane Lancaster, LA1 1TH Tickets: Free   11am — Try your hand at creative translation from French by using a short film by literary author Noemi Lefebvre and film maker Laurent Grappe commissioned for the evening “Found in Translation! Literary Dispatches…

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Found in Translation: Literary Dispatches from the Peripheries of Europe

Friday 29th March 7:30pm Venue: The Storey Auditorium, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster, LA1 1TH Tickets: £5 Full/ £3 Concession Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW! Online: VIC Ticketbox In Person: Lancaster & Morecambe Visitor Information Centres By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808 Writers Emma McGordon (Whitehaven, Cumbria), Grigory Semenchuk (Ukraine),…

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Beatrix Potter to Harry Potter, Looking Glass to Spyglass: the much loved worlds of Children’s Books

Saturday 30th March 2pm Venue:  The Sanctuary, Lancaster Library, Market Square, Lancaster LA1 1HY Tickets: £10 Full/ £8 Concession Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW! Online: VIC Ticketbox In Person: Lancaster & Morecambe Visitor Information Centres By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808 The books and stories we read as children…

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joinedupwriting – Roger McGough + LiTTLe MACHiNe

Saturday 30th March       7pm Venue:  The Great Hall, Lancaster University, North Spine, Bailrigg , Lancaster LA1 4YW Tickets:  £18.50— £16.50 Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: Online: In Person: Great Hall Booking office, The Great Hall Complex, Lancaster University By phone: 01524 594151   For the Saturday evening of our final…

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The Sea Swallow

Venue:  Ludus Dance, Assembly Rooms, King St, Lancaster, LA1 1RE Tickets: £10 Full /£7.50 Concession /£5 Child (16 and under) SPECIAL OFFER— Family Deal available for £25 (two adults two children) Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW! Online: VIC Ticketbox In Person: Lancaster & Morecambe Visitor Information Centres By phone:…

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Litfest Scarecrow Competition

Welcome to the first Litfest Scarecrow Competition! Members of the Lancaster & District   community are invited to create a scarecrow in the form of a character from literature. The character can be from any book, from Harry Potter to Sherlock Holmes, Dorothy Gale to the Gruffalo. Simply create your scarecrow and place it somewhere that…

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Litfest Heritage Exhibition

Monday 4th – Sunday 31st March Venue: The Thomas Storey Room, The Storey, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster, LA1 1TH and The Gallery, More Music,13-17 Devonshire Road,Morecambe, LA3 1QT We’ve delved into the Litfest archives to give you a glimpse into the festival’s 40 year history. Join us for a unique exhibition, including a stunning display…

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Literary Lancaster: Walks Talks and Tours

Sunday 3rd March &            2pm Wednesday 20th March Venue: John O’Gaunt Gatehouse, Lancaster Castle, Castle Parade, Lancaster, LA1 1YJ Tickets: £5 Adults/ £4 Students & Under 16s Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: Online: In Person: Lancaster & Morecambe Visitor Information Centres By phone: 01524 582394/ 01524 582808 For…

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Saturday 15th December 11am &3pm Father Frost: Winter Stories from Russia

Date: Saturday 15th December Time: 11am & 3pm – there will be two showings of this performance Venue: The Storey Auditorium, Meeting House Lane, Lancaster LA1 1TH Tickets:  Full £9/Concession £7/ Child (Under 11) £5/ Family Combo Ticket (Two adults two children) £23 – Tickets can be purchased in a variety of ways: AVAILABLE NOW!…

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litfest logo


Lancaster & District Festival Ltd (trading as Litfest) are seeking a new:   CHAIR OF THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES   Information   Litfest, Lancaster is a Lancaster-based literature organisation that has been presenting festivals and literature-based events since 1978 and is the third oldest literature festival in England. It has a long and varied history…

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The Lost Words Litfest Crowdfunder – Coming soon!

As our 40th festival approaches, we at Litfest felt it was more important than ever to give back to our local community, in particular to the booklovers of tomorrow – our community’s children. Inspired by similar initiatives across the country and particularly by Jackie Morris’ fantastic event at Litfest 2018, we are delighted to announce…

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Thursday November 15th 7:30pm – The Big Blind

A boy stands on a lakeshore. Behind him: all he’s ever known. Ahead: a chance for love but a higher chance of death. He’s had a happy life, and a sheltered one. But his father gambled away that life, the debt cannot be paid in money and it won’t be his father who pays. Childhood is over…
Dominic, Bridget & Leif combine storytelling and music in a playful and gripping performance. They bring to life an ancient full-bloodied fairy tale for modern audiences, weaving versions from Norway, Scotland, Ireland and India with contemporary Scandinavian folk music. Through it they explore the consequences for the young when older generations fail to make adult decisions.

Where We Land: a storied isle – Jacqueline Harris Storytelling Tour

Wednesday 4th, Thursday 12th & Thursday 19th July Time: 7:30pm Venues: The Storey Auditorium Lancaster (4/7), The Boo – Rossendale (12/7) & Brigsteer Village Hall (19/7) Tickets: £9/£8  Tickets for the 12/7 event are available through The Boo. Tickets for the 4/7 and 19/7 performances are available now and can be booked in advance in…

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Thanks for the memories

Our annual literature festival is over for another year – thank you so much to all the artists, volunteers, board members, the teams at the venues, Lancaster and Morecambe VICs and of course to our wonderful audiences. We’re looking ahead now to our 40th festival running throughout March next year – we’re hoping to do…

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Post festival Cool Down – The Gods and Monsters Show: Pandvani108

Tuesday 24th April 7pm

Take a trip to the underworld…
Walk into the fire…
And don’t look back….
The stage is set for a high voltage mythological mash-up!
Combining performance storytelling, music and song, Pandvani108 turn on the epic jukebox to bring us a wild night of unbowdlerised global myth and epic, in untamed short form style. Gods, monsters, giants, warriors & divas from Greece, Ireland, the Scandinavian North, the Indian heat and far beyond, are all hauled centre stage.
Far from sedate spoken word, this is a brash & exuberant cinema of the imagination, inspired by a 3,000 year old epic singing tradition and with more deities than you can shake a stick at. Encounter the Short Myth Massive – live and irresistibly direct!

Springfest Podcast

As part of our first Litfest Springfest, two days of the very best in nature writing, we bring you another exclusive—Litfest’s first podcast!

Free to download from the Lifest website ( from Friday 23rd of March, come and join us on a literary walk around the streets of Lancaster. Exercise your mind along with your legs!


Litfest are very sorry to announce that the artists involved in our Fantastic Beasts Launch Night and Saturday’s YA Day have ALL been snowed in by the Beast from the East! All three artists live in the North of the UK (Cumbria, Northumberland and Scotland) and, whilst the conditions in Lancaster are milder, are unable…

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Dear Festival-goers, welcome to Litfest’s 2018 programme…

To download a PDF Programme click here: 2018 PDF Programme This year we bring you a month-long programme packed with incredibly varied events! The 2018 festival launches on a truly ‘Fantastic’ evening at Lancaster Castle’s Shire Hall. Olivia Lomenech Gill—illustrator of JK Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – will give us a…

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Harry Potter’s Fantastic Beasts: An evening with Olivia Lomenech Gill

Friday 2nd March 7pm

The magical worlds conjured up by J. K. Rowling have enchanted readers for over two decades. Litfest are pleased to be launching this year’s programme with a very special event with Olivia Lomenech Gill, illustrator of the new coffee table edition of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. 

Set in the historic Shire Hall at Lancaster Castle, this is a not-to-be-missed event for all fans of the books, films
and anyone interested in illustration. Olivia will offer a behind-the-scenes insight into the creation of this extraordinary book, her life and work and some truly fantastic beasts. 

Cosplay is welcome at this event.  

YA Day: Cathy Forde – Story to Stage

Saturday 3rd March 2pm

Young Adult fiction has seen a real boom in recent years and Litfest are delighted to welcome acclaimed novelist Cathy Forde to speak as part of our programme.  Known for gritty and uncompromising prose that leaves readers thinking long after the final pages of her books are finished, Cathy has also worked with National Theatre Scotland on Theatre for young people.

In this session, she will discuss her bestselling novels Fat Boy Swim and The Drowning Pond exploring the journey of adapting these from novels to the stage.  A fascinating talk that will be of interest to writers and all interested in drama.

YA Day: Hannah Hodgson: The World of vlogging

Saturday 3rd March 3:15pm

Ever wondered how to take the plunge and start a Bookish YouTube channel? Or maybe you already have, but wonder how to build up a relationship with publishers, viewers or authors themselves? In this talk and Q&A session Hannah Hodgson will be revealing everything she has learned (sometimes the hard way) to get you on your way towards starting a YouTube channel. She will be discussing everything from how to approach publishers for free books, how to manage your time when you have a serious illness or many commitments and how to get yourself out there using Twitter and other social media platforms.

Most importantly, Hannah will be talking about how to enjoy yourself in your new online diary. Her favourite thing about her channel is the fact that her viewers feel like her friends – which means that she has avoided social isolation due to her disability. There will also be a Q and A session, where you can ask Hannah anything, from why she started her channel to what editing software she uses. 

Everywhere is Somewhere: A question of legacy

Friday 9th March 7pm

Naseem Khan’s memoir Everywhere is Somewhere explores how stories from our diverse community are essential in understanding what it is to be British today. A radical and a pioneer, Naseem was born in Birmingham to an Indian father and German mother. After studying at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford, she was held as an ‘Indian spy’ whilst travelling in Pakistan during the second India-Pakistan war in 1965. She was ultimately released back into India. Naseem returned to London, and became part of the black power scene in Notting Hill, editing the Hustler magazine with contemporaries
including Darcus Howe.
Naseem sadly passed away on the 8th of June 2017. Here her publisher Kevin Duffy talks about the process of publishing her final work, chronicling Naseem’s extraordinary life.

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