• Dispatch from Durham

    I'm staying in a 13th century castle, rumoured to be haunted, as journalist-in-residence at the Durham Book Festival. While I saw no ghosts during my stay, the experience was nevertheless a haunting one, as the words of the writers lingered on in the memory.

    At the festival I chaired events with a range of speakers, including Alexei Sayle, Lionel Shriver, Harriet Harman, June Sarpong, Chibundu Onozu and Sarah Winman, in beautifully designed venues which were decked out with real trees. Whether politician, comedian or novelist, all had insights to share. We were also treated not only to readings but to singing, from the talented Chibundu Onozu who was discussing her novel Welcome to Lagos on a panel with Sarah Winman whose excellent new novel Tin Man exquisitely explores love, loss and the power of art and creativity.

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  DISPATCH FROM PORTUGAL

  The National Travel section
  April 2012

writing, broadcasting, speaking