Fourth Ryedale Book Festival returning this October!

The fourth annual Ryedale Book Festival is set to take place this year on Saturday 10th and Sunday 11th October. Work has been going on tirelessly behind the scenes by volunteers to put together yet another varied, vibrant and exciting programme that should appeal to everyone who likes reading and books.

Events include a birthday tea party at The Old Lodge with Charlie and Lola creator Lauren Child, a night of comedy, entertainment and performance poetry at The Milton Rooms with BBC Radio 4 comedian John Hegley, a very special workshop with South Yorkshire artist Su Blackwell who creates the most exquisite sculptures from books and exhibits her work all over the world, a chance to meet popular, award-winning young adult writer, Melvin Burgess, author of ‘Junk’, and an evening with Amanda Owen, “The Yorkshire Shepherdess” which is a joint event, in collaboration with Ryedale Special Families.

You can also visit the Waterstones pop-up shop in Malton Market Place selling books by all festival writers, or alternatively find something new by a talented local writer at the independent book fair.

Not only are there nearly 40 book festival events across Malton town centre, but this year the festival once again coincides with Malton’s Monthly Food Market on the Saturday. So for food for thought AND stomach Malton, AKA Yorkshire’s Food capital, is the place to be this October.




While you’re here, why not explore Ryedale in full? It is a region of stunning contrasts and beautiful landscapes with many places to visit, and is well known for its warm welcome. Malton itself is a quaint and historical market town boasting a wide range of independent shops and cafes. On Malton’s doorstep you’ll also find the breathtaking North York Moors national park, beautiful city of York and famous seaside towns such as Whitby and Scarborough.

Also part of the programme this year will be Clare Morpurgo (MBE), who will be leading a fascinating event speaking about her father, Sir Allen Lane, the founder of Penguin Books. Her husband, writer and former children’s laureate Michael Morpurgo, attended last year’s festival and has continued to support it by sharing with his fellow writers the welcome he received and singing the praises of the high quality of the Ryedale audience.

There will be a whole host of writers speaking about their books, including Lucy Foley for a discussion of her book, ‘The Book of Lost and Found,’ over afternoon tea at The Talbot; Maggie Harcourt in a conversation about her book, ‘The Last Summer of Us’; Stephen Kelman, writer of award-winning ‘Pigeon English’, talking about his new book ‘Man on Fire’; ‘Arcadia’ writer Iain Pears; and ‘A Death in the Dales’ writer Frances Brody.




You can also join Andy Seed and the P Factor finalists, Marcia Williams for a graphic novel twist on the history of the Tudors, Christopher Tadgell in the historic town hall for A History of Architecture, sports journalist Harry Pearson in a conversation about North Yorkshire Sporting Heroes, the Dickens Society in an exploration of Dickens’ Children and bookseller and blogger from Cambridge, Gemma Savage, will be sharing her love of books with the audience and inviting them to consider the concept of The Life of Book.

For a fun, engaging, family-friendly event, come along to the Castle Gardens on the Sunday from 11am for face painting, a workshop and mural demonstration with Matt Sewell, an event with Michael McCarthy – one of Britain’s leading writers on the environment, an owl display, book cover quiz trail, storytelling by Ian Douglas, storytelling and poetry with Catherine Heinemeyer and Anneliese Emmans Dean and a cup of delicious coffee!

Alongside arranging the October programme, school outreach work has been well underway throughout the year. Quentin Blake has continued to support these projects.

This year, the organisers were delighted to find out that it has qualified for nearly £10,000 lottery money from the Arts Council. The money has been pledged in order to strengthen the infrastructure and secure the legacy of the festival. As a part of this, the festival has had a brand new website designed by Malton-based designer Ten Fathoms. Why not check out the new look and, while you’re there, find out more details about each event: