Durham Book Festival 2020 to take place online

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Founded in 1990, Durham Book Festival is one of the country’s oldest literary festivals, which we are proud to produce on behalf of Durham County Council with support from Durham University, Arts Council England and BBC Newcastle.

The festival traditionally takes place every October in some of Durham’s most impressive historic venues. In light of COVID-19, the 2020 festival will still go ahead – but this year the entire festival will take place online, with more than 50 events presented for free between 9-18 October.

As always, we are planning a diverse and wide-ranging programme, with details to be released at the official launch on 10 September. This year it will include high-profile and international author events, poetry readings, live drawing, writing workshops, literary quizzes, podcasts and social media takeovers.

The events can be accessed from anywhere in the world, inviting local people and those from further afield to enjoy the North East’s largest literary event. The 2020 festival will take this opportunity to shine a spotlight on Durham, showcasing the stories of the North East, including at least 20 newly commissioned works.

We will also distribute 4000 free copies of our Big Read and 1500 copies of our Little Read titles to Durham residents, focussing particularly on groups in the county who have been hardest hit by the pandemic.

We look forward to bringing you more information about the free programme from September 2020 at and to seeing you all online at the festival!