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Durham Book Festival

New Writing North is the proud producer of Durham Book Festival, which takes place in and around the beautiful city of Durham each October.

Durham Book Festival 2022 takes place from 13-16 October 2022. Find the programme and book tickets on our dedicated Durham Book Festival website.

At a glance

2022 line-up

We’re thrilled to announce the programme for Durham Book Festival 2022 with headline guests including LJ Ross, Marina Hyde, Jeremy Vine, Alexander McCall Smith, Kit de Waal, Hannah Lowe, Fiona Hill, Richard O’Neill and the announcement of the Gordon Burn Prize.

Browse the programme

New commissions

Durham Book Festival is renowned for its commissions of new work across all art forms. During the festival we will be launching a host of exclusive films, podcasts and essays. The commissions will be available to watch, read and listen to throughout the festival, from Monday 10 October 2022.

2022 Commissions

The Gordon Burn Prize

The UK’s most fearless literary prize was founded in 2012 in memory of the late North East writer Gordon Burn. The announcement of the prize takes place each October during Durham Book Festival, with readings from the shortlisted writers.

Read more

A vibrant mix of authors, thinkers and artists

Each October, Durham Book Festival brings a vibrant mix of authors, thinkers and artists to the city of Durham, providing inspiration and entertainment. Our digital work has attracted audiences from all over the world and our work in County Durham communities reaches thousands of people each year.

Founded in 1990, Durham Book Festival is one of the country’s oldest literary festivals. For many years it was a well-kept secret in the region’s cultural calendar, but it has grown significantly in recent years.

The festival is part of Durham County Council’s festival programme, and since 2011 has been produced by New Writing North, with support from Durham University and Arts Council England.

How to get involved

Visit Durham Book Festival

Durham Book Festival 2022 will take place between 13–16 October 2022. Tickets will go on sale in mid-August. Join us live and online for a programme of exciting events and commissions.

Book tickets

The Big Read

Each year we distribute 3,000 copies of our selected Big Read title to communities throughout County Durham, including through schools, university staff and students, council staff, libraries, businesses, hospitals, and prisons. We invite you to pick up a free book and rediscover the joy of reading.

Find out more

The Little Read

In 2018, we launched The Little Read, especially for children under seven and their families. Every primary school and nursery setting in County Durham receives a copy of a specially chosen picture book and resources and creative activities inspired by the book.

Find out more

Watch some of our past events

Discover Durham Book Festival

The Big Read with Lemn Sissay

Writing Durham with Ben Myers

Philip Pullman in conversation with Caroline Beck, DBF15