About

Welcome to our third Bury St Edmunds Literature Festival, an event which aims to entertain and stimulate you and help lift your spirits after the most dreadful eighteen months most of us have ever known.

As I write this, Covid infections are going down and the world is gradually re-opening. We hope this continues but we will be doing all we can to make our venue, the beautiful Unitarian Meeting House, safe for us all. 

The Festival ranges over many genres, from poetry to drama (Bury Theatre Workshop), from fiction to memoir (Adrian Bleese, Julia Blackburn) to nature writing (Matt Gaw).

This year’s Festival starts with an evening of Poetry from John Row and the East Coast Poets followed by an Open Mic session. I know that many talented poets live in or near Bury so do come and share your work.

On Friday night, Simon Edge will be talking about his satirical novel, Anyone for Edmund, starring our very own Patron Saint as you may never have envisaged him, while on Saturday, distinguished historian, Francis Young will set the historical record straight.

Saturday and Sunday offer book lovers the chance to hear some truly exceptional writers talk about their work and answer questions from the audiences. They include the hugely popular Liz Trenow and Rachel Hore, Julia Blackburn whose deeply felt writing in Time Song seems peculiarly apposite for these times, David (D.J.) Taylor talking about George Orwell and on Saturday night a real treat for fans of crime fiction: William Shaw & Nicola Upson talking about their craft.

We finish the Festival this year on a high with the wonderfully entertaining Jan Etherington.

So explore the programme and plan your weekend. This year we are offering all day tickets for both Saturday & Sunday so you can come & go as you please. Refreshments will also be offered.

We look forward to welcoming you all to the Festival.

The Festival Team

Gill Adams

Jackie Burnett

Clare Dawson

Eileen Dreyer

Diane Hind

Susan Pocklington

Julia Wakelam

Message from our Patrons, Mike & Judy Spenser-Morris

“We were honoured to be asked to be patrons of the inaugural Bury St Edmunds Literature Festival in 2017 and having seen the remarkable success of that event, we were delighted when invited to support the Festival again this year. 

As avid readers, we feel a particular affinity with the Festival’s desire to bring so many wonderful authors to Bury St Edmunds to talk about their work. Our incredible town, that has such a depth of history, seems to be the perfect setting for a Literature Festival and we thank you wholeheartedly for your incredible efforts in again bringing it to fruition. 

We wish you – and all those who have put so much effort into arranging the event – huge success. May there be many more BSE Literature Festivals in the future.”


Mike & Judy Spenser-Morris