THE Exmoor Literary Festival will return to Dulverton in the autumn after the success of last year’s inaugural event.

Festival organisers said the schedule was almost complete, with a mix of author talks on many diverse topics, and online and printed programmes and tickets due to go on sale in the summer.

The festival in Dulverton Town Hall will run across Saturday and Sunday, November 18 and 19, and this year will also feature an invitation-only festival drinks party.

Among the top names who will be attending is Sir Michael Morpurgo with a brand new book about life on his Devon farm due out this autumn, in conversation with writer Alice Thomson.

Historical biographers Andrew Lownie and Catherine Ostler will discuss their recent biographies of two very different duchesses involved in very different scandals – Lownie’s Traitor King – the Scandalous Exile of the Duke and Duchess of Windsor (Edward VIII and Mrs Simpson), and Ostler’s The Duchess Countess (18thC Duchess of Richmond, Countess of Bristol) interviewed by Dulverton’s historical novelist Kate Lord Brown.

This year’s ‘Book Club’ fiction panel will including best-selling novelists Sarah Turner (Instagram’s theummumsymum) and her debut novel Stepping Up, former Blue Peter presenter Janet Ellis with The Butcher’s Hook, and Hannah Richell’s The River Home and The Search Party to be released in January, 2024.

Local celebrity and MasterChef judge William Sitwell returns to the 2023 festival interviewing award-winning writer Henry Jeffreys Vines in a Cold Climate on the subject of British wines.

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MasterChef judge William Sitwell.

Julian Glover, former special adviser to David Cameron and author of the Government’s Landscapes Review: National Parks and AONBs, will be talking to Exmoor’s favourite farmer and writer Victoria Eveleigh, discussing ‘What is our countryside for?’.

Another session will be celebrity photographer Harry Borden, Survivor: A portrait of the survivors of the Holocaust and On Divorce, with writer Albert Read with his newly-released The Imagination Muscle, both in conversation with writer and editor Miranda Taylor.

Dulverton will also welcome British explorer Belinda Kirk, UK top survival expert John Hudson, and travel writer Hilary Bradt.

Welsh vet Sion Rowlands will tell tales from his hilarious book Letting the Cat Out of the Bag and well-known sports reporter Dennis Coath will recount some funny anecdotes from his many interviews over the years and his book Rats, Pies and Pigeon Poo.

Other writers are being confirmed for the event, not least local railway historians Freddie Huxtable, Ian Coleby, and Amyas Crump, on the subject of Exmoor, Somerset, and Devon’s lost railways.

Plans are also being made for creative writing workshops to be held in Dulverton Library during the event.

The festival will also see the return of the under-12s Dulverton Exmoor Literary Festival Children’s Writing Competition, with prizes given by Waterstones Barnstaple, to be presented this year by Sir Michael Morpurgo.

Waterstones will again be providing a pop-up bookshop at the festival with author book signing.

More information will be available on the Visit Dulverton website and social media pages.

The festival is sponsored by local businesses Tozers Solicitors, Wellhayes Vineyard, Exmoor News, Stockham Farm Exmoor, Exmoor Character Cottages, Stags estate agents, Osteo & Physio Tiverton, Jeff Pegrum Landscaping, Ware Construction, Rothwell and Dunworth Books, Your First Book, The Exclusive Cake Company, The Exmoor Feasting Company, Maitland Walker Solicitors, Hedley Price Funeral Directors, and Friendship and Sons Funeral Directo