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Eclectic line-up in store for bookworms as Ullapool festival reveals programme

By Hector MacKenzie

Sally Magnusson
Sally Magnusson

AN acclaimed Wester Ross festival will tomorrow release full details of its programme.

Ullapool Book Festival is now in its 15th year and will this year be held from Friday, May 12 to Sunday, May 14.

Among the guests coming to Ullapool are novelists Angus Peter Campbell, Robert Alan Jamieson, Sally Magnusson and Malachy Tallack.

Also confirmed are poets Jo Shapcott and Roseanne Watt and journalists Neil Mackay and David Pratt. Melanie Reid will be talking about her memoir, The World I Fell Out Of.

Poets Michael Pedersen and Hollie McNish join forces with cult music maker Withered Hand for a unique collective outing. The three will share their own work and some thoughts on their dear friend, the late Scott Hutchison. As a four-piece, they appeared a couple of times as the Cold Turkey collective, whilst Pedersen and Hutchison had been due to perform together at Ullapool Book Festival in 2018.

On Saturday morning, the four shortlisted authors for the Highland Book Prize – Neil Ansell, Andrew Miller, Judith Ross Napier, Malachy Tallack – will read in a showcase session.

And on Saturday evening the winner of the second Highland Book Prize, presented by The Highland Society of London, will be announced by the judges. This will be followed by a chaired session with the winning writer.

Most of the festival guests live in Scotland but the committee has continued its tradition of also having writers from outwith the UK. This year they are from Kathleen Winter (Canada), Volker Kutscher (Germany) and Penny Johnson (Palestine).

In addition, the director of HeadRead, the Tallinn Literary Festival (Estonia) has been invited to Ullapool and the book festival hope this may result in some development of cultural links between the North West Highlands and the eastern Baltic.

The festival is in receipt of funding from Creative Scotland’s Open Project Fund and has also received sponsorship from other bodies and local businesses.

Tickets go on sale on Friday, March 29. The festival will be held from May12 to 14 May in Ullapool Village Hall.

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