The Programme

We have a fantastic line-up for 2019.  The main Festival weekend might be over but we still have some great events coming up.  All 2019 events are on the website and the full Festival Brochure is still available.

You can DOWNLOAD THE 2019 BROCHURE!

Some events are bound to sell out quickly so do book early to avoid disappointment!

If you missed our 2018 Festival, you can still download the 2018 Brochure.

 – This colour indicates a child & family event! 

 –  This colour indicates an event outside the main Festival weekend! 

  – This colour indicates an event during the main Festival weekend!

  • 2019

    Free events in 2019!

    Interesting in writing or meeting local writers?  Come along to our monthly ‘Writers Meets’ on the first Wednesday of each month at 10.30 am at JellyPickleJam Cafe.  Everyone welcome! 

    Meanwhile, look out for signs that our Festival ‘Book Fairy’ has been out and about, depositing piles of free books in selected venues around the town.  The idea is that you find them, take one, read it, then leave it for someone else to pick up.   To start you off, the Book Fairy has already made a number of drops – Raphael’s Restaurant, Delicious Cafe, Brew Bear, Hampton Farm Shop, Ellenden Farm Shop/Cafe,  JellyPickleJam, Morrisons Community Book Shelf and Yates Court.  Latest fairy visit is Clives of Cropthorne.

    Our Book Fairy has also just deposited a batch of books to two new destinations – Sedgeberrow and Church Lench telephone box Book Exchanges.  Exciting times and we are delighted to be supporting this great community initiative.

  • Thursday 18th July, 7.00 pm

    'Remembering Johnny Kingdom'

    Johnny Kingdom, gravedigger, wildlife enthusiast and utterly unique television personality did more than anyone since Lorna Doone to bring the wonderful landscape and wildlife of Exmoor to millions of people.  Johnny was extraordinary.  With no training and little formal education, he used a video camera and an unadulterated enthusiasm to take the viewing public with him into the magical world of red deer, badger, fox and all manner of wildlife in this superb but little known corner of England.  Johnny died tragically in the autumn of 2018 on land he had bought and spent more than a decade transforming into his own personal Eden.

    David Parker was the man who brought Johnny to television.  The two worked together for more than 15 years in a roller coaster relationship that took them to far flung parts of the Moor and latterly the world.  David will use clips from the more than 50 television programmes they made together and talk about how they worked and why Johnny was so brilliant at bringing us closer to the world of wildlife he himself enjoyed so much.  David Parker’s book, written with Johnny’s photographs, ‘Johnny Kingdom’s Wild Exmoor’, is published by Halsgrove.  David gave a wonderful talk in 2018 about Laurie Lee.  We are delighted to have him back again in 2019.

    Venue: Evesham Rowing Club, Abbey Road, Evesham. WR11 4ST

    Tickets: £6.

  • Wednesday 28th August, 7.00 pm

    'Redcoats' (celebrating 80 years of Butlins splendour!)

    We are thrilled to welcome the very popular Mikron Theatre Company to Evesham with a performance of their new show, Redcoats.  This show is bound to bring back wonderful memories for anyone who has ever been to Butlins, or for those who haven’t.  

    Billy Butlin used Shakespeare himself to sell a seaside dream to the great British public.  Join us as Mikron delve into holiday huts, bonny babies and knobbly knees, with guest appearances from Marlene Dietrich, Gracie Fields and Laurel and Hardy.  Mikron’s radiant Redcoats will guide you through 80 years of Butlins splendour, with their trademark mix of fun, pathos and songs.

    The riverside setting of Raphael’s Restaurant, Hampton Ferry, will be the perfect setting for what will hopefully be a glorious summer’s evening.  Bring your own chairs, blankets, umbrellas (just in case!), but please don’t bring your own food and drink.  Raphaels will be serving food and drink before the performance and during the interval.  Come early and enjoy a meal before the performance. 

    Venue:  Raphael’s Restaurant, Hampton Ferry, Boat Lane, Evesham. WR11 4BP

    Tickets: No tickets required for this event.  In usual Mikron tradition, a cash collection will be taken after the show.

  • 2nd - 30th September

    Poetry in Colour

    Poetry in Colour, an exhibition featuring illustrations by local artist, Lindsay Tether inspired by Sue Johnson’s poetry.  Poems by Sue in response to Lindsay’s paintings.  Each poem and illustration tells a story.  They are all linked in some way.

    See also Art & Poetry Workshop – Monday 16th September, 10.00 – 12.00.

    Venue: Evesham Library.

    FREE EVENT

  • Monday 16th September, 10.00 am - 12.00 noon

    Workshop 'Art & Poetry', with Lindsay Tether and Sue Johnson

    Participants will be invited to create their own poem and artwork inspired by the Poetry in Colour Exhibition, which runs from 2nd – 30th September.

    Venue: Evesham Library.

    Tickets: £6, including tea/coffee and home-made cake.   To reserve a place contact: info@eveshamfestivalofwords.org.

  • Thursday 19th September, 7.00 pm

    'Fearful Symmetry, Blake's Jerusalem'

    William Blake is described as the greatest of the English rebel poets that still cannot be ‘put in a box’.  In this one-man play, we join William Blake in 1824 on a regular walk from Hampstead Heath to his home in the Strand after spending a day with his friend John Linnell and family.  As usual for Blake, he is full of song and singing, often using his own verse as lyrics to pass the time as he strolls home.  Questioned about ‘Building a New Jerusalem’, on this walk Blake tests the question for an answer.  This solo performance will be followed by a Q & A session. 

    Playing Blake is Robin Hillman, who will be remembered for his performance of John Clare in 2018.  Robin has spent many years performing as an actor, fiddle-player and singer.  Along with Stephen Loveless, Writer/Director and Co-Producer, who sadly died early 2019, Robin is co-founder of Theatre 17 (an Independent Theatre Company formed to bring theatre to small and unusual venues).  Join us in a new venue for 2019.

    Venue: St Andrew’s Parish Church, Pershore Road, Hampton, Evesham. WR11 2PQ

    Tickets: £8, incl. glass of wine and nibbles.

  • Saturday 5th October, 10.30 am - 4.30 pm

    Workshop 'Developing your novel: from idea to first draft', with Alison May

    ‘Developing your Novel: From idea to first draft’ is for anyone who has an idea for a novel they’d love to write, or a draft that’s lost its way, whether it’s your first, second, third or twenty-third novel.  On this one-day course Alison will demystify plot structure, characterisation and setting, and introduce ways to motivate yourself to stick with your draft through the highs and lows of writing a novel.

    Alison May is a writer, tutor, editor and blogger, and a regular contributor to our Festival.  She is also half of the writing team that makes up the author Juliet Bell. 

    Venue: Almonry Museum and Heritage Centre, Abbey Gate, Evesham. WR11 4BQ

    Tickets:  £20, incl tea/coffee and home-made cake.  Bring your own picnic lunch.  NB:  Just 2 places remaining.

  • Saturday 5th October, 6.30 - 7.45 pm

    '84 Charing Cross Road'

    Join Linda Hart and John Burns in this dramatised reading of 84 Charing Cross Road, the famous story of a 20-year transatlantic correspondence between Helene Hanff, an American writer, and Frank Doel, a London second-hand bookseller.  A shared love of literature was the basis of what became a warm friendship, as Helene sends Frank off in search of Quiller-Couch, Elizabethan love poems, The Canterbury Tales, The Oxford Book of English Verse, and many other tomes.  It is a story full of charm, warmth and humour, that has been the subject of a successful book, film and play.  5th October 2019 marks 70 years to the day since the date of the first letter from Helene.  Join us on this auspicious occasion!

    Linda Hart moved from New York to England in 1975 and had various London-based jobs in countryside conservation.  Since 1993 – living in Herefordshire , then Worcestershire – she has worked as a freelance writer, researcher, editor, lecturer and performer.  She compiled and edited Once They Lived in Gloucestershire: A Dymock Poets Anthology.  

    John Burns’ sensitive and thoughtful readings have delighted audiences from Arundel to York.  As a regular and popular performer at Ledbury Poetry Festival for over twenty years, his readings range from tragedy to comedy, poetry to prose, Lord Byron to Robert Browning.  One reviewer referred to his ‘velvet vocals’ and the phrase now follows him around.

    This event is kindly sponsored by Waitrose & Partners.

    Venue: NOTE CHANGE OF VENUE FROM THAT PUBLISHED IN BROCHURE.  This event will not now take place in Waitrose Cafe, but in Hampton Community Hall, Pershore Road, Evesham.  WR11 2PQ.

    Tickets: £8, including drink/nibbles.

  • Monday 21st October, 2 - 4 pm

    Workshop: 'Stepping into Self-publishing: marketing your book', with Ellie Stevenson

    Following on from her very popular workshop: ‘Motivation and Moving Forward’, held in February, Ellie Stevenson returns by popular demand with a follow up workshop offering guidance on marketing your forthcoming or published book – both ebook and print versions.  This is always a popular topic so do book early to secure a place.

    Venue: Almonry Museum & Tourist Information Centre

    Tickets: £15, including tea/coffee and home-made cake.

  • 1st December

    'Christmas Wordy Quiz Sheet'

    Our 2019 ‘Christmas Wordy Quiz Sheet’ will be out from 1st December, with a closing date of Sunday 5th January 2020.  Free to enter.  £10 book token to the winner.  Available to download from the Festival website, or pick up from the Almonry or the Christmas Tree display in St. Lawrence’s Church.

  • Mid December - early January 2020

    'Christmas Tree Festival'

    Come along to Evesham’s third Christmas Tree Festival in the beautiful setting of St. Lawrence’s Church.  Admire our Festival tree, and all the others, and don’t forget to pick up a copy of our Christmas Wordy Quiz Sheet, and the Outline Programme for 2020.

    FREE EVENT

  • Monday 16th December, 7.30 pm

    'Christmas at the Almonry'

    Come along to the Almonry for a fabulous evening concert with Musyck Anon and David Howe, performing music, songs, readings and anecdotes to celebrate the festive season, and all served up with a glass of mulled wine and a mince pie.  (A Joint Almonry/Festival of Words event).

    Venue: Almonry Museum & Tourist Information Centre

    Tickets: £5, available from the Almonry only.