festival saw ticket sales approaching 60,000 and sell-outs in 66
events during the ten day festival. The success confirms the festival's
place as one of of the leading literary events in the country.
over the ten-day Festival - which involved some 400 leading authors
- included talks from renowned writers such as Irvine Welsh, Ruth
Rendell, Hanif Kureishi, Louis de Bernieres, James Kelman, Fay Weldon
and Roddy Doyle.
year's theme 'the state of the nation' also provided a wonderful
opportunity to welcome revealing tales from a host of politicians,
journalists and public servants including Greg Dyke, Jon
Hague, Neil Kinnock, Stella Rimington and a rather controversial
last minute visit from Cherie Booth.
Festival also offered a wonderful collection of eminent visitors
from the stage and screen including Joanna Lumley, director Anthony
Minghella and Sheila Hancock, Jamie Oliver, Michael Palin, Rob
Joly and a rare public appearance by popular artist Jack
over 300 events on offer in total the festival really took over
the town in a big way. There were a number of free, informal events
in the festival tent; street performance around town, poetry every
single day and special Book It events for children. There were also
writing workshops for adults plus a collection of specially-commissioned
theatre and visual arts projects. Christopher Cook, the Festival
biggest thank you must be to our audiences: enthusiastic, discriminating,
passionate about books and writing and eager to argue about the
State of the Nation. They're the men, women and children who make
diversity of the festival programme in 2004 attracted record-breaking
audiences with many already talking about next year.
Main Festival in 2005 is scheduled for 7-16 October and if it's
anything like this year's then it'll undoubtedly be a cracking ten
about Gloucestershire festivals