2014 Festival: programme

Book tickets online – or View or download the event programme as a pdf – or read on.

Typically, at each session, you can listen to the author, have a chance to ask questions, and, if you would like a copy of the featured book, buy it from Waterstones and have it signed by the author.

Please note that the age ranges for the morning sessions are just a guide.

0900-0915: Grand Opening

Morning Sessions – for children and young people

0915-0945 Story-time: Start the Day with a Story

age: up to 7; venue: Village Hall; tickets: FREE
Flamstead’s very own actor-in-residence CLIVE HAYWARD will read from some of our best-loved children’s books. Some are classics, others are more recent.  But we can’t think of a better way to start Books in the Belfry. Age: Up to 7 but parents and carers welcome. Village Hall: This session is FREE but you must still book tickets. Up to four free tickets per order.

0930-1015: How to Train Your Parents

age: 10 and over; venue: Church; tickets: £3.00

Louis moves house but his new school is Swotsville and the pressure is on to succeed from mum and dad. Until that is he meets Maddy, who gives him the low-down on how to turn the tables and train his parents. Author PETE JOHNSON reads from How to Train Your Parents and its sequel My Parents are Out of Control, which was short-listed for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize. Age 10 and over, but parents willing to be trained welcome too.

1000-1045 Workshop: Make Your Own Book

age: 7 & over; venue: Village Hall; tickets: £3.00

Children’s illustrator LAURA TRINDER, who specialises in comic and graphic novels, hosts a workshop on how to make a book.

1045-1130: Brotherhood In the Belfry
DAWN FINCHbook cover for Brotherhood of Shades

age: 11 and over; venue: Church; tickets: £3.00

Children’s fantasy novelist DAWN FINCH will tell us about Brotherhood of Shades, the story of Adam, a streetwise homeless boy in modern London who finds himself involved with a secret monastic order whose members are all ghosts. This thrilling and macabre tale takes us on an adventure that spans the living and the dead, traversing time as Adam battles to solve a prophetic riddle and save the world. What better setting than a medieval church?

1100-1145 Workshop: Poetry Please

age: 8-12s; venue: Village Hall; tickets: £3.00

Award-winning children’s poet JOHN MOLE will lead a poetry-writing workshop. Rhyming allowed. Just turn up with your imagination for what promises to be a fun session.

1145-1230: Ghostbusters
JONATHAN STROUDbook cover for Lockwood

age: 10 and over; venue: Church; tickets: £3.00

Books in the Belfry will be free of ghouls thanks to top children’s author JONATHAN STROUD who will bring along his own ghost-hunting kit to talk about his thrilling new series Lockwood and Co. There is an epidemic of ghosts in Britain and only children have the power to fight them! Lucy Carlyle, a young psychic investigator joins London’s smallest agency, run by charismatic Anthony Lockwood. But their case involves spending a night in the most haunted house in England… and trying to stay alive.

1200-1245: Writers’ Workshop

age: 11 & over; venue: Village Hall; tickets: £3.00

Children’s author SUE HAMPTON hosts a creative writing workshop for teenagers. Enjoy the freedom to be creative in an interactive and engaging session. You never know. You could go on to be the next JK Rowling.

Note that this session has been extended to include age 11+.

Afternoon Sessions

1300-1400: So You Want to Publish Your Own Book?

venue: Church; tickets: £5.00

With the advent of the Internet, e-books and the Kindle, it’s never been easier to get your own work out there. But how best to do it? LIONEL BIRNIE, AMANDA SMITH and IAN RIDLEY – three authors who successfully branched out into self-publishing – explain what prompted their decision to go it alone as well as the pitfalls and advice on how to market the end-product.

1400-1500: Gardeners’ Tea Time

venue: Village Hall; tickets: £5.00 with tea/coffee & scone

Come and take tea and talk tubers with MATT BIGGS, otherwise known as The People’s Gardener. Well known for his appearances on the long-running BBC Radio Four Gardeners’ Question Time this is GQT with a difference.

1500-1600: This Sporting Life

venue: Church tickets: £5.00

Award-winning author IAN RIDLEY discusses the art of sports writing and autobiographies with two leading football figures whose lives he has brought to the page. MARK HALSEY, who until he retired last summer, was the Premier League’s longest serving referee, will talk about Added Time, recently short-listed for Sports Biography of the Year. Then ex-Premier League footballer turned BBC pundit STEVE CLARIDGE recalls Tales from the Boot Camps and its sequel Beyond the Boot Camps. With the World Cup finals just days away there will also be the chance to quiz the panel on England’s chances in Brazil.

1700-1800: The Spy Who Loved
CLARE MULLEYcover for The Spy Who Loved

venue: Church tickets: £5.00

CLARE MULLEY’s extraordinary story of Christine Granville, Britain’s first female agent in the Second World War, was published to critical acclaim last year. The Spy Who Loved uncovers the secrets, loves and life of a war-time heroine whose contribution to the Allied effort earned her the George Medal. Clare will discuss code-breaking, honey-traps and our enduring fascination with spies. Expect to be shaken and stirred.

Early Evening Session

1900-2000: In Conversation
book cover for The Murder BagTONY PARSONS

venue: Church; tickets: £8.00 with glass of wine

TONY PARSONS is known for his best-selling novels on the trials and tribulations of modern life, notably Man and Boy, which won the Book of the Year prize in 2001. Now he is moving in a new direction with the publication of his first crime thriller The Murder Bag, already listed in the top 10 must-read books this year. Be among the first to hear Tony explain why he created Max Wolfe, a coffee-loving, dog-walking, insomniac detective with a hunger for justice.

Note that the drinks for this session will be available from approx 6:30pm with the talk starting at 7:00pm.

Flamstead Book Festival 2014, Flamstead Literary Festival 2014, Flamstead Book Fest, Flamstead Lit Fest – Flamstead, near St Albans, Hertfordshire, UK