Blackpool Winter Gardens: War Horse author Sir Michael Morpurgo OBE and Sunday Times bestselling author Milly Johnson to head up new literary festival Word Fest. in resort

A new northern literary festival will be hosted at Blackpool Winter Gardens with authors including War Horse writer Sir Michael Morpurgo OBE.

By Nicola Adam
Friday, 29th July 2022, 12:30 pm
Updated Friday, 29th July 2022, 12:49 pm

The Word Fest. event will also feature Sunday Times Bestseller Milly Johnson, Devil Dogs writer Saul David and the late Barbara Windsor’s husband Scott Mitchell, plus more to be announced.

It will take place at the Winter Gardens on October 7-8.

Sir Michael Morpurgo OBE, storyteller and writer of more than 150 books will read an abridged version of his classic War Horse, the best-selling novel that tells the story of the first world war from the perspective of Joey a young farm horse.

Authors including Sir Michael Morpurgo OBE (pictured), acclaimed storyteller and writer of over 150 books including War Horse, will visit the Winter Gardens this autumn in a literary celebration on October 7/8.

Michael will read accompanied by music and songs from the National Theatre production sung by one of the cast leads – Ben Murray who played Songman.

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The festival is being co-produced by the Winter Gardens team and local independent bookstore Book Bean & Ice Cream and will see celebrated authors talk about their love of writing, their books, answer questions and sign books for fans.

Sunday Times bestselling author Milly Johnson will appear in ‘conversation with’ to talk about her well-loved stories of women.

Author Milly Johnson

Milly’s latest emotional novel, Together, Again, is her 20th book and will have been released just the month before the October Word Fest.

Saul David will host an illustrated talk about his latest book Devil Dogs, the dramatic second world war tale of American troops and the legendary first Marine Division.

Scott Mitchell, husband of much-loved English actress Dame Barbara Windsor, will appear to talk about his book By your Side, which is an honest and personal account of the life they shared for 27 years, their love story, her glittering life in showbusiness and the painful true cost of dementia.

Elaine Silverwood, owner of Book Bean & Ice Cream and co-producer of Word Fest. said: “As owner of a local, independent book store I am also passionate about events that connect the author to their readers to bring to life their work.

“Word Fest. will be a weekend celebration of literature and the spoken word and will be a joy to create and deliver for readers of all ages and genres.”

Many of the tickets include the gift of the author’s book and are now on sale priced from £15.00 at