South Scotland

Book festival sets up campsite for visitors

Book town Image copyright Wigtown Book Festival

Wigtown Book Festival is setting up a campsite for visitors to help with accommodation pressures.

The Dumfries and Galloway festival is staging its biggest ever programme when it gets under way later this month.

It is now opening a campsite in Duncan Park, which will have portable toilets and showers and a cooking area, and will cost £12 a night.

A total of 236 authors are set to take part in talks, workshops and signings between 23 September and 2 October.

Last year, organisers said 10,000 people visited the town during the festival but accommodation was hard to organise.

EventScotland is supporting the organisation of the site, while extra ferries are also being put on from Northern Ireland.

Image copyright Other
Image caption Janet Ellis, Sir Malcolm Rifkind and Sian Williams are among the speakers at Wigtown this year

Artistic director Adrian Turpin said: "In 2015, around 22,000 tickets were issued for our events and over 10,000 people visited the Wigtown Book Festival; normally the town's population is 900.

"We've been very lucky to work with EventScotland and introduce a campsite connected to the book festival in the area for the first time to help the town accommodate the population swell."

He added: "Wigtown is Scotland's National Book Town, it's a great place to come and discover books, meet people and see the area that inspired some of Robert Burns's best work.

"As one of the world's best natural beauty spots, Dumfries and Galloway is famed for its incredible green landscape, rolling hills and views of the Milky Way.

"I hope that the new camping and ferry crossing opportunities encourages more people to come to the area and the 2016 Wigtown Book Festival."

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