The Best Book Festival yet?

By Bridget Osborne

Photograph above: Two of the bestselling female writers of our time, Joanna Trollope (An Unsuitable Match) and Kate Morton (The Clockmakers Daughter) talk to Cathy Rentzenbrink about their new books, inspiration, and the challenges of writing. In my view yes.

This is what the festival Director Torin Douglas had to say:

“It’s been a terrific year. Our sales income is easily a record – which is great news for our reading charities – and our total audiences are higher than they’ve ever been. We sold around 4,000 tickets, with over 300 in St Michael & All Angels Church for Max Hastings and around 175 each for Charles Spencer, Misha Glenny and Anthony Horowitz.

At Chiswick House we had a capacity crowd – 200 – for ‘Vanity Fair, Thackeray and Chiswick’. In the Andrew Llloyd Webber Theatre at Arts Ed we had a full house of 200 for Alan Rusbridger. We were sold out for Ann Cleeves and Caroline Slocock in the Parish Hall, which holds 100 seats. Our new venue – the London Buddhist Vihara – also seats 100 people and was full both for Roger McGough and the Young People’s Poetry Prizegiving.

Even more rewarding was the great feedback we’ve had. Our audiences really have enjoyed this year’s speakers and you can see lots of appreciative comments on social media. And the authors seem to have loved being here and the great welcome they’ve received.

On top of all that, our innovation for this year, the Cookbook Festival, was a huge success with sell-out demonstrations and talks in the Marquee and at Ginger Whisk. We’re already looking forward to next year!”

Torin Douglas.
Director, Chiswick Book Festival