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Bookings and

See details included with each event

Tickets for most events can be booked in advance either online, by phone, or from the venue box office.


For most events, you can book your tickets online by clicking the "Book this event online" link beside the event details. All bookable events can also be found in the May section at…


To book by phone, call the number beside the event.


Or, on the day, tickets, if still available, can be bought on the door at each venue.

But please, with popular events, please check first for availability!

The ticket price in brackets applies to people entitled to concessions.


Most evening events scheduled at Swindon Arts Centre are available to buy as a double ticket at a reduced price. But these discounted tickets cannot be bought online. Should you wish to purchase double tickets, please call the box office on 01793 524481.

If you have any queries about booking or the Festival in general, please email us or ring 01793 771080.

Saturday May 19

Writing Workshop and Writers’ Lunch with Matt Harvey

Lower Shaw Farm, West Swindon SN5 5PJ
Tel 01793 771080
12.30pm – 5pm • 19 May • £30


12.30pm – 1.30pm: WRITERS’ LUNCH

– where healthy homemade food will nourish you and meeting other writers at table may inspire you!


Writing is a solitary business. Writing well is a tricky one. Writing good prose or poetry, for others to read, is even harder. How can we do it better?

What are the techniques, for writing poems, short stories, or anything in prose? How can we produce writing that is fit to be read, heard, or published?

This workshop will have friendship, inspiring writing exercises, and time for questions and discussion.

Experienced writers will gain more experience and newcomers will discover helpful ways into writing. In other words, anyone interested in improving their writing skills, receiving good guidance, meeting other writers, and discovering more about writing for performance or publication is welcome.

Bring your laptops, if you wish; and any other favoured writing instruments and materials too.

With a number of anthologies to his name, experienced workshop leader Matt Harvey, who says that it’s likely we may surprise the very words we have written, is a poet, broadcaster, writer for Radio 4’s Off the Page and The Guardian, and is author of three song cycles and a musical. His latest book is Sit!

Festival Finale

Town Hall, Regent Circus SN1 1QG
Tel 01793 601700
7.30pm • 19 May £12 (£10)


Rhyme, rhythm, music, stories, and wordplay with poets, storytellers, and live musicians, in a relaxed cabaret setting, this promises to be a fitting Finale for the twenty-fifth Swindon Festival of Literature!

Music will come chiefly from the Glowglobes, aka Laura Pocket, delightful and dangerous on double bass, harmonica, and vocals; and John Holmes, on guitar and unmistakable longing-filled vocals.

Another kind of music, soulful flamenco, that drinks deep from its original sources, will come from FLAME&CO, where the Flame is Garcia Lorca’s ‘duende’ and the spirited Co is guitarist Haydn Bonadie, trained in Algeciras, and singer Cristina Navazo-eguía Newton, from Spain and Swindon.

Poems old and new, hollow and true, will come from Matt Harvey, poet, lyricist, and columnist, who has been around a while but is reckoned still to be full of potential. In fact, he’s doing very well and his latest book is Sit!

Poet Hilda Sheehan has travelled far and wide with her delightful and disturbing poems, from London to Ledbury, across land and sea to Chicago but, thankfully, always back to Swindon. Her debut collection was The Night my Sister Went to Hollywood and her latest is The God Baby.

Stories that bristle with brio and wordplay come from Chris Park, who happily lives in a luxuriant hedge, by beehives, birds, and beautiful people; has been slow-cooked in the ancient earth-ovens of folklore and fable; crafts greenwood structures, and tells great stories. He also likes his laptop.

And bringing the curtain down on the 25th Swindon Festival of Literature Finale are international acro-balance duo of Jacob Hi-Ho and Darine Flanagan, newly-returned from a Central American tour of duty with Performers without Borders. The minute they walk in the joint.