THE Times and Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival returns to town this Friday and will be offering two weeks of unparalleled entertainment.

Cheltenham will be transformed into a literary lover’s dream as the Festival welcomes many of the world’s finest writers, actors, politicians, poets and leading opinion formers to help celebrate the joy of the written word.

Alongside a programme of nearly 500 debates, interviews and workshops, there will also be Book It!, a festival within a festival for families and young readers.

Around 1,000 speakers will take part in more than 550 events at the family-friendly Festival Village, in the heart of Cheltenham.

Headliners include: Hillary Rodham Clinton, Salman Rushdie, Alan Hollinghurst, Sarah Waters, Miranda Hart, Matt Lucas, Robert Webb, Russell Brand, Bear Grylls, Ian Rankin, Sarah Millican, Nadiya Hussain, Simon Schama, Amit Chaudhuri, Bill Nighy, Roddy Doyle, Judy Murray, Harry Enfield, Alison Steadman, Michael Parkinson, Lauren Child, Armando Iannucci, Nigella Lawson, Twiggy, Brian May, Jackie Kay, Hollie McNish, Robert McCrum, The Famous Five, Where’s Wally, Philippa Gregory, Nikesh Shukla, Peggy Seeger, June Sarpong, Charles Spencer, Ali-A and Al Murray.

Two previously announced headliners Scarlett Moffatt and Michael Morpurgo have had to pull out.

There will be a feast of food on offer at the festival, with The Daffodil, a beautiful art deco former cinema, the new venue for the Festival’s food events.

And for those who are unable to get tickets to the event of their choice, there will still be plenty to do for free at the Festival, with over 50 free pop-up events and activities that are open to everyone.

  •  The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival is on from Friday, October 6-Sunday, October 15. Venues: Montpellier Gardens, Cheltenham Town Hall and various venues in Cheltenham.
  • Visit for more.