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Rob Penn

The Man Who Made Things Out of Trees

Winter Weekend 2015, 

Rob Penn cut down an ash tree to see how many things could be made from it. Journeying from Wales and Ireland across Europe to the USA, he finds that the ancient skills and knowledge of the properties of ash, developed over millennia making wheels and arrows, furniture and baseball bats, are far from dead. He chronicles how the urge to appreciate trees still runs through us like grain through wood.

Rob Penn

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Matt Dickinson

Mortal Chaos

Hay Festival 2012, 
Ever wanted to climb Everest? Or film a heart-stopping adventure? Join the author of this gripping thriller for an edge-of-your-seat event. Matt was also the fifth British climber to summit the North Face of Everest!
 
10+ years

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Matthew Engel talks to Peter Florence

Eleven Minutes Late

Hay Festival 2009, 
An enraptured paean to a national obsession. Britain gave railways to the world, yet its own network is the dearest (definitely) and the worst (probably) in Western Europe.

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Bernardo Atxaga y Ignacio Martínez de Pisón en conversación con Luis Alemany

Segovia 2008, 
Bernardo Atxaga, el galardonado autor de Obabakoak y El hijo del acordeonista, y Ignacio Martínez de Pisón, autor de más de una docena de obras, entre las que destacan las novelas Carreteras secundarias y Dientes de leche, conversarán con el periodista Luis Alemany y leerán fragmentos de sus respectivas obras.

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Iestyn Edwards

Madame Galina, Forces Sweetheart

Hay Festival 2010, 
An hilarious account of entertaining troops on base in Iraq and Afghanistan, from comic, singer and appallingly plausible 16-stone balletomane, Iestyn Edwards, aka Madame Galina Prima Ballerina. There may be hoofing…

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Ben Goldacre

Bad Science

Hay Festival 2008, 
Satirist and doctor Ben Goldacre exposes fakery, pseudoscience and quackery in consumer marekting and in the media. Chaired by Rachel Holmes.

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OLGA TOKARCZUK in conversation with Gaby Wood

The Winner of the 2018 Man Booker International Prize

Hay Festival 2018, 

Polish novelist Olga Tokarczuk wins for Flights - translated into English by Jennifer Croft, who will join her onstage.

The longlist for this year's international fiction prize consists of Laurent Binet, Javier Cercas, Virginie Despentes, Jenny Erpenbeck, Han Kang, Ariana Harwicz, László Krasznahorkai, Antonio Muñoz, Christoph Ransmayr, Ahmed Saadawi, Olga Tokarczuk, Wu Ming-Yi and Gabriela Ybarra. The shortlist will be released on 12 April, and the winner will be announced on 22 May.

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Julia Hailes, Ben Law, Janet Cotterell

Greening Buildings

Hay Festival 2013, 

Grand Designs icon Ben Law discusses a more sustainable approach to buildings with Passivhaus expert Janet Cotterell and Green Consumer guru, Julia Hailes. Chaired by Hay-on-Earth Director Andy Fryers.

 

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Gordon Corera talks to Guto Harri

The Art Of Betrayal

Winter Weekend 2011, 
The British Secret Service has been cloaked in secrecy and shrouded in myth since it was created a hundred years ago. A unique and unprecedented insight into this secret world and the reality behind the fiction.

More about The Art Of Betrayal
From the defining period of the early Cold War through to the modern day, MI6 has undergone a dramatic transformation from a gung-ho, amateurish organisation to its modern, no less controversial, incarnation. Gordon Corera reveals the triumphs and disasters along the way. For the first time, it is possible to draw a picture of what spies really get up to. Corera draws on the first-hand accounts of those who have spied, lied and in some cases nearly died in service of the state. They range from spymasters to the agents they ran, from the families of Britain's spies to their sworn enemies. Most of these accounts are drawn from interviews conducted by the author; many have chosen to speak on the record for the first time. From the Congo to Moscow, from Tehran to Hanoi, from post-war Vienna to the back streets of London, these are the voices of the people who have worked on the front line of Britain's secret wars. And the truth is often more remarkable than the fiction.

Gordon Corera talks to Guto Harri

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IM Glynn

Cambridge Series: Elegance in Science

Hay Festival 2010, 
From Kepler’s Laws to the Double Helix, elegance is a fundamental aspect of the beauty and imagination involved in scientific activity.

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Hector Abad Faciolince talks to Rosie Boycott

Oblivion

Hay Festival 2011, 
A heartrending, exquisitely-written memorial to the author’s father, Hector Abad Gomez, whose criticism of the Colombian regime led to his murder by paramilitaries in 1987.

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Digby Jones

Fixing Business

Hay Festival 2017, 

The entrepreneur examines the relationship between business, government and society. He discusses Britain in a post-Brexit world, Donald Trump’s America, and the ‘elephant in the boardroom’ – executive pay.  Lord Jones was Director General of the CBI. In 2007 he was appointed Minister of State for UK Trade and Investment. He talks to Jesse Norman.

Digby Jones

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Audrey Niffenegger talks to Sarah Crompton

Raven Girl

Hay Festival 2013, 

The new dark fairytale by the author of The Time Traveler’s Wife is being produced as a Royal Ballet show by legendary choreographer Wayne McGregor. The work premièred on 24 May.

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Ali Sparkes

Unleashed

Hay Festival 2013, 

Action fans will enjoy this in-depth session about the pulse-pounding series starring teengers with special powers.

9+ years

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Antonia Fraser

Love and Louis XIV

Hay Festival 2007, 
The historian examines the women in the life of the Sun King.

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Jeremy Leggett

The Triple Crash and the Green New Deal

Hay Festival 2009, 
The Solar Century founder and Peak Oil expert finds hope in a new environmental responsibility.

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Abigail Brundin

Cambridge University Series 14: Only A Pen Can Ease My Pain

Hay Festival 2013, 

In C17th Italy, the number of girls and young women entering convents rose rapidly as dowries became increasingly expensive. Not all the girls went willingly and some left powerful written accounts of their experiences.


Entry to this event is free but you must reserve a ticket.

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Peter Sawyer

Vikings

Hay Festival 2013, 

In this sumptuously illustrated lecture the historian asks: were the Vikings, as contemporary description had it, a ‘valiant, wrathful and purely pagan people’ who swept in from the sea to plunder and slaughter? Or, in the words of a Manx folksong, ‘ware-wolves keen in hungry quest’, who lived and died by the sea and the sword? Or were they unusually successful merchants, extortionists and pioneer explorers?

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James Ward

Adventures in Stationery: A Journey Through Your Pencil Case

Hay Festival 2015, 

We are surrounded by stationery: half-chewed Cristal Bics and bent paper clips, rubber bands to fiddle with or ping, blunt pencils, rubbers and Tipp-ex. Exploring these everyday objects, Ward reveals tales of invention – accidental and brilliant – and bitter rivalry. He also asks the difficult questions, like who is Mr Pritt, and what are the thousands of uses claimed for Blu-Tack?

James Ward

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Maidhc Dainín Ó Sé

I gComhrá

Kells 2013, 

Óna chéad leabhar, A Thig ná Tit Orm, i leith, tá cáil agus tarraingt i bhfad is i gcéin ar Mhaidhc Dainín Ó Sé. Foilsíodh a shaothar is déanaí Punt Isló i mbliana. Labhróidh sé linn, i gcomhrá, faoi seo agus tuilleadh!!

Maidhc Dainín Ó Sé, a man of many talents, is a well-known author in his native Irish language. An occasion not to be missed, where he will speak to us in discussion about his works, travels and passions.

Irish language event

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Sinclair McKay and Thomas Briggs

Bletchley and Enigma

Hay Festival 2016, 

The historians reveal unknown secrets of Bletchley’s wartime operation and the Enigma, and discuss the code-breaking challenges we face in today’s rapidly changing and technologically complex world. McKay is the author of the bestselling The Lost World of Bletchley Park and Bletchley Park - The Secret Archives. Bletchley Park’s Enigma expert, Thomas Briggs, brings a genuine, working Enigma machine to the Festival.

Sinclair McKay and Thomas Briggs

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Amanda Owen

A Year in the Life of the Yorkshire Shepherdess

Hay Festival 2017, 

The best-selling author describes the age-old cycle of a farming year and the constant challenges of life at Ravenseat, the remote Yorkshire hill farm she shares with husband Clive, nine children and 1,000 sheep. Chaired by Oliver Balch, author of Under the Tump.

Amanda Owen

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The Funny Panel

Hay Festival 2013, 

 

Roald Dahl Funny Prize-winner Jamie Thomson is joined by two top funny talents, Mark Lowery and Sarah McIntyre. Come and share the jokes!

Duration 60 mins.

9+ years

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Catherine Fieschi, Simon Hoggart, and Oliver James

The Demos Debate: Hearts and Minds

Hay Festival 2008, 
Catherine Fieschi, Simon Hoggart, and Oliver James explore how emotions operate in the political sphere, or affect issues like citizenship, which are normally thought of in terms of impartial rationality.

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Jonathan Stroud

Bartimaeus

Hay Festival 2011, 
Fantasy prequels don’t come more magical than this. The Ring of Solomon takes us back to 950 BC Jerusalem – so whether you’re an established or future fan, this is a must.
 
10+ years Knapsacks & Ginger Beer