Fingers crossed as Wells LitFest reveals first big name

THE future of any performing arts events or arts of literary festivals taking place this year is hanging in the balance. But the organisers of Wells Festival of Literature, are taking an optimistic view and have announced one of their big names for this year’s event, scheduled to take place from 16th to 24th October.

A statement from the festival says: “The past few weeks have been filled with uncertainty but, as far as the Wells Festival of Literature is concerned, one thing is definite: we still intend to hold our annual festival – our 28th! In fact we are so determined that it should go ahead that we have already almost completed finalising the programme.”

In a break with tradition, the festival organisers have announced that one of the speakers will be the Poet Laureate, Simon Armitage, who was a recent guest on BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs.

Simon was the festival’s Open Poetry judge last year but was unable to come to Wells in person. So everyone is looking forward to hearing him in October, when he will talk about his latest collection Magnetic Field.

Inspired perhaps by having the Poet Laureate as a judge last year, the 2020 festival competition entries are already almost double. Prize money for the Open Poetry category has increased, with £1,000 for first prize. Entries for the competitions for short story, book for children and open poetry, remain open until 30th June. Visit for more information.