Welcome to our Early Bird programme. The full programme will be released at the end of March.
Major General Arthur Denaro commemorates the centenary of the death of Herefordshire’s only Great War recipient of the Victoria Cross, cited for exemplary leadership and ‘a splendid disregard of danger’ in single-handedly disabling enemy machine gun placements that had been enfilading his entire battalion at Ronssey during the Battle of Épehy.
Helen Moore is an eco-poet based in north-east Scotland. She has published two poetry collections, Hedge Fund, and Other Living Margins and ECOZOA. A third collection, The Mother Country, is due in 2019. Chaired by Jane Davidson, director of the award-winning INSPIRE at University of Wales, Trinity Saint David.
The Road to Palmyra follows historian Dan Cruickshank and legendary photographer Don McCullin into the heart of war-torn Syria, on a dangerous mission to document the cultural destruction wrought by Isis, and to understand what it means to the people of the nation. Their final destination is the ancient city of Palmyra to find out what remains of the ruins after Isis fled. These stones represent the very soul of Syria, and the debate about what to do with them is about to begin. For both men, it is a return journey to a place with which they have long been obsessed, but to get there, they have to travel through a country still in the grip of war. Cruickshank, McCullin and director Adrian Sibley discuss the challenges of filming in a war zone.
Followed by a Q&A chaired by the BBC’s Head of Arts Commissioning, Mark Bell.
The Irish Referendum on abortion will take place on 25 May 2018. Since 1983 an estimated 170,000 Irish women have travelled to the UK to terminate their pregnancies, incurring high costs, logistical difficulties and emotional strain. Another 2,000 women a year end pregnancies by taking the abortion pill, illegally obtained online. Whatever the result of the referendum, the impact on Ireland’s society will be huge. Professor de Londras’ research concerns constitutionalism, human rights and transnationalism. Máiréad Enright researches in feminist legal studies and religion.
A world leading expert in her field, Professor Davies has visited countries all around the world to see how they are responding to the serious effects of climate change. A recipient of the Philip Leverhulme Prize and most recently a Fulbright Scholarship, Professor Davies presented the popular groundbreaking documentary series Her yr Hinsawdd (Climate Challenge). With the programme’s producer, Elin Rhys, she will discuss the importance and the challenges of engaging the public with scientific research.
The first part of an evening of delicious cricket talk celebrates the career of the legendary broadcaster and commentator. Now that 'Blowers' has decided to declare his TMS innings closed, his book reveals the secrets of life in the commentary box and of the rich cast of characters with whom he shared it, from the early days of John Arlott and Brian Johnson to Aggers and new boys Boycott, Swann, Vaughan and Tuffers.
A Book Club like no other, as our favourite literary vaudevillians read about monsters and Europe and things that go bump in the mind. Crace writes the satirical Digested Reads for the Guardian. Sutherland is Emeritus Lord Northcliffe Professor of English at UCL and the go-to senior Eng-Lit Super-Don.
Lou Clark is back in the sequel to Me Before You and After You, the latest instalment in a rollercoaster romantic life. Moyes has become a global best-seller with a magical ability to conjure life’s tragedies and triumphs.
Roy Noble is a Welsh legend – a consummate broadcaster, mischievous raconteur and collector of tales. His new book, launched today, is a glorious weft of fact, fiction and fancy – always moving and hilarious, elegantly told and often true. Pull up a chair…
Mark Lynas was one of the original GM field wreckers. Back in the 1990s – working undercover with his colleagues in the environmental movement – he would descend on trial sites of genetically modified crops at night and hack them to pieces. Two decades later, most people around the world – from New York to China – still think that GMO foods are bad for their health or likely to damage the environment. But Mark has changed his mind. He lifts the lid on the anti-GMO craze and shows how science was left by the wayside as a wave of public hysteria swept the world.
The Road to Palmyra follows historian Dan Cruickshank and legendary photographer Don McCullin into the heart of war torn Syria, on a dangerous mission to document the cultural destruction wrought by Isis, and to understand what it means to the people of the nation. Their final destination is the ancient city of Palmyra to find out what remains of the ruins after Isis fled. These stones represent the very soul of Syria, and the debate about what to do with them is about to begin. For both men, it is a return journey to a place with which they have long been obsessed. But to get there, they have to travel through a country still in the grip of war.
James Acaster is hilarious and brilliant. Here is his show blurb for the programme: “James Acaster reflects on the best year of his life and the worst year of his life and does stand-up comedy about them while throwing a strop. Last year he did a book tour and was reading from his book and while the blurb said very clearly that it was a book reading, absolutely zero members of the audience knew it was a book reading and turned up expecting stand up. So, having learnt that no one reads these blurbs you’ll excuse me if I don't put 100% effort into this one. I will, however, put maximum effort into the show, which is a stand-up show although I imagine the audience will be expecting a book reading. And yes, I’ve given up pretending it’s not me writing this blurb.” Definitely expect stand-up. Great.
The Cambridge astronomer introduces his ground-breaking survey that celebrates the popular subject of astronomy through 300 images created by those who have tried to understand – or who have been inspired by – the beauty and mystery of stars, planets, and beyond. The selection includes paintings, photographs, sculpture, animation, prints, sketches and digital renderings with iconic works by renowned photographers, artists and astronomers alongside previously unpublished finds.
For 150 years, canals were the high-tech water machines driving the industrial revolution. Amazing feats of engineering, they carried the rural into the city and the urban into the countryside, and changed the lives of everyone. Then, just when their purpose was extinguished by modern transport, they were saved from extinction and repurposed as a 'slow highways' network, a peaceful and countrywide haven from our too-busy age. Today, there are more boats on the canals than in their Victorian heyday. Writer and slow adventurer Jasper Winn spent a year exploring Britain's waterways along 1,000 miles of 'wet roads and water streets' where he discovered a world of wildlife corridors, underground adventures, the hardware of heritage and history, new boating communities, endurance kayak races and remote towpaths. Chaired by Mark Skipworth.
The Irish Rockabilly superstar brings her phenomenal live show to the festival. Her new album is described as her ‘most personal and heartfelt work to date’ (Independent). With accolades from the likes of Bob Dylan, her latest release has been celebrated as a combination 'of dusky Americana and vintage British soul’ (All Music). Her previous albums include Love Tattoo, Mayhem and Tribal.
Wake up and re-energise with our morning yoga class. Iyengar yoga is characterised by precision, alignment and attention to detail and is an inclusive and accessible yoga practice. Mats are provided; wear comfortable clothing; all abilities welcome. Wye Valley Yoga
This workshop allows you to bring together your hand and heart of awareness in creating an ensō; a disciplined, creative practice of traditional Japanese Zen ink painting, a circle that is hand-drawn in one uninhibited brushstroke to express a moment when the mind is free to let the body create.
The Table is in the centre of the town about ten minutes steady walk from the festival site: 43 Lion St, Hay-on-Wye, Hereford HR3 5AA.