Beam is delighted to bring you a packed annual Wakefield Lit Fest programme that celebrates reading and writing from 23 September to 2 October 2016. Taking place across the city and district from community centres, cafes and shops to Wakefield's historic buildings, cathedral, chapels and libraries - each festival programme includes a wide range of community led events including poetry readings, writers workshops, spoken word, performance, music and more alongside an array of events organised by our brilliant festival partners.

We hope that you can join us this year as we celebrate our 5th birthday! Sign up to the newsletter or follow us on social media to stay in touch with all the latest Lit Fest news and festival announcements...

What's Happening This Year?

Fri 04 Pre-Festival Event - The Black Horse Poets present: Wakefield Writes! /

Mon 14 Pre-Festival Event - Free Spoken Word Taster Sessions For 16-25s /

Thu 17 Pre-Festival Event - Wakefield Civic Society presents Dr Jonathan Foyle. Lincoln Cathedral: The Greatest Building in the Age of Magna Carta /

Fri 18 Beehive Poets present Voices of Yorkshire / Yew Tree Youth Theatre presents ‘Just a Pretty Face’ and ‘Mugged’ / Changing Faces by the Merry West Collective, Amy Charles and Rachel Watson / An Evening with Gillian Clarke /

Sat 19 How to Kick that Writer’s block: A Creative Writing Workshop / Featherstone Festival of Words / Lions, Tigers and Bears! / Trinity Heroes / National Trust Nostell Priory & Parkland: Nostell's Places in Your Words / Laura Barnett: The Version of Us / Poetry reading with Helen Burke / On An Eastern Breeze / Throwing Mother in the Skip / Literary Quiz with Quizzical Yorkshire /

Sun 20 Women’s Writes - Anthology Launch and Reading / Wakefield to Zambia / The Drawings of Barbara Hepworth / Woodland Wanderings / My Big Phat Writers Group present Short Phat Scripts /

Mon 21 Free Spoken Word Taster Sessions For 16-25s / A Year of Cake with Lynn Hill / Wakefield Civic Society presents: A Taste of Honey /

Tue 22 A Window to the Inner Self: The Letters of Esther Milnes of Wakefield, 1771-1773 / History Wardrobe presents Gothic For Girls / Tall Tales 2: This Time It's Personal! / The Anglo-Saxons and Why They Matter with Michael Wood /

Wed 23 Wacky Wednesday / People's History and the National Story with Michael Wood / New Writing North in association with Sage Gateshead presents: The Man on the Moon musical workshop / Uncovering Digital Fiction / Word Life - Open mic night with Mark Grist and Leeds Young Authors. /

Thu 24 Animal Story Time with Lion Learners / Get It off Your Chest! / National Trust Nostell Priory & Parkland: Open Book Days / Poetry Reading with Gareth Durasow / An Evening of Nordic Noir with Simon Pasternak and Kenneth Degnbol / Red Shed Readings presents Cresties /

Fri 25 Well Women’s Centre presents Inspired By Goddesses / Creating a Character with Debbie Taylor / Animal Story Time with Lion Learners / Children's Writing Challenge / The Art House presents Maeve Rendle / At the Coalface: The memoir of a pit nurse, Joan Hart and Veronica Clark / Nick Arnold and his Horrible Sciences / Women's Voices Ring Out / Black Horse Poets present: Wakefield Hears! /

Sat 26 Lit Fest @ Red Shed / Big Read / How to Write, Produce, Publish and Promote a Book in 2015 / Trinity Heroes Premiere Event / Lyrics Workshop with Andy Craven-Griffiths / How to Make (Awesome) Comics Workshop / Artists as Living Books / Comic Book Workshop / Kate Fox - Spoken Word Workshop (14 yrs +) / Bedtime Stories with Natalie Bellingham / Yew Tree Youth Theatre presents Robin Hood / Kate Rusby / Kate Fox /

Sun 27 Manasamitra presents Lullaby, The Singing Bowl Workshop / Manasamitra presents Lullaby, The Singing Bowl Performance / 'Diary of a Wakey Kid' Workshop / Nine Lives by Zodwa Nyoni, West Yorkshire Playhouse & Channel 4 Writer in Residence 2014 / Writers from Wakefield: Jane Steele, Debs Robinson & live music from Pete Rosser / Bedtime Stories / Ian McMillan - Neither Nowt Nor Summat / Changing Faces by The Merry West Collective, Amy Charles and Rachel Watson / Wakefield Lit Fest Wrap Party /

Lit Fest 'Seed Fund' Events

Our Supporters



With special thanks to Alison Cassels, John Clarke, Ian Clayton, Dan Conboy, Steve Dearden, Murray Edwards, Dean Freeman, Stephen May, Kevin Trickett, Sara Unwin, Michael Wood, Andy Wright and to all our fantastic festival partners, writers, performers and volunteers for your continued enthusiasm and support.

The Beam Lit Fest Team: Hollie Latham & Natalie Walton, Lit Fest Co-ordinators; with Frances Smith, Robert Powell, Emma Butler, Suzie Cross, Helen Ainsley and Rachel Price.