An expanded Rochdale Literature and Ideas Festival returns this October, with the dates for its first-ever 7 day run confirmed.
Following the festival's success in 2016, it has been extended to run for a full week for the first time.
It will run from Tuesday 17 to Monday, 23 October 2017 and we are promising a packed week of exciting arts for all ages.
Events will cover drama, comedy, poetry, spoken word, visual arts and children's shows. For young people aged 14 to 25, another exciting 'Generation Z' programme is being put together, with plans to commission a brand new piece of work specially for the festival.
Last year was hailed as the festival's best yet with record ticket sales of over 3,200 that provided a £61,500 boost for local businesses. The programme included events with Jenny Eclair, Owen Jones, Simon Callow, Mark Billingham, Nikesh Shukla, Ian McMillan, Alastair Campbell, Mark Steel and Joanne Harris.
The 2017 festival will include guest speakers and writers and is aimed at celebrating and promoting the Maskew Collection of classic literature and philosophy at Rochdale Central Library, encouraging people to engage with books and ideas. Annie and Frank Maskew, a Rochdale couple who shared a passion for reading and thinking, met in Rochdale Library in the 1950s and left a sum of money to be used on resources and events related to literature and philosophy to ensure classic works are available for future generations.
The festival will include events at venues across the borough of Rochdale.
Authors, performers and workshops will start to be confirmed from April onwards, with tickets on sale from 10am on Monday, 7 August 2017.
Councillor Janet Emsley, our cabinet member for culture, health and wellbeing said:
"This is a fantastic festival and once again I am looking forward to seeing who's on the line-up. The calibre of guests we have had over the last four years has been superb. The festival brings together so many genres and really opens your eyes. This year it runs for seven days and there will be something for everybody. We're going to be taking the festival to different places around the borough too, showcasing some more great venues."
For information about appearing at the festival or getting involved in other ways, email
'The calibre of guests we have had over the last four years has been superb'
Sponsorship opportunities - about the festival.
"It's a great opportunity for residents, groups and businesses too, so I urge people to get in touch with us. The festival makes an important contribution to the arts in the borough, gives lots of enjoyment to thousands of people, and we are all looking forward to it"
Councillor Emsley added.
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The festival is organised by us, funded by the Maskew Bequest, ticket sales and sponsorship.