Festival brings a feast of arts and literary events to Thame - and tickets are on sale soon

Lucy Worsley. Picture:' Daniel D. Moses www.danielmoses.com
Lucy Worsley. Picture:' Daniel D. Moses www.danielmoses.com

Tickets will go on sale next week for the annual festival that puts the arts and literary spotlight on Thame.

The 9th Thame Arts and Literature Festival (TAL) runs from October 18 to October 21, with events at venues across the town, and tickets are on sale online from noon on August 1.

There is a feast of literary treats to enjoy, with author talks, music, literature, plays, readings, debates and more.

If you cannot buy tickets online, a box office will open at the Town Hall on Saturday, September 1 at 9.30am. Call 0788 548 4406.

Historian, author, curator and television presenter Lucy Worsley, recently awarded an OBE, will be talking about the world’s most famous divorce.

Lady Mary is the story of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon’s divorce told through the eyes of their daughter, Lady Mary, and you can hear this on October 20 at the Spread Eagle Hotel at 2pm.

British adventurer and writer Charlie Walker, who specialises in long distance, human-powered expeditions and has travelled by bicycle, foot, horse and dugout canoe, will share his experiences. In his first book, Through Sand and Snow, he takes you on the first 18 months and 18,000 miles of a four-year, 43,000-mile bicycle journey, at Christchurch on October 21 at 5pm.

Johnny Johnson is the last surviving member of the famous Dambusters. Hear, in his own words, the exploits of a man who survived one of Britain’s most risky operations from WW2. The Last British Dambuster is at the Players Theatre on October 18 at 12.30pm.

Shakespearean actor Michael Pennington joins the festival on October 20 to discuss ‘King Lear in Brooklyn’, when he performed in New York. Hear about his experiences at the Players Theatre, at 6.30pm.

Enjoy the words of poet Wendy Cope in Anecdotal Evidence, her first collection of poetry since 2011, on October 20 at the Players Theatre at 3.30pm.

The festival will also commemorate those who gave their lives during the two world wars in Thame Remembers, the project which has seen crosses placed on graves across the world. Hear more about this project on October 21 at Thame Barns Centre at 5pm.

New this year is the TAL Visitor Hub, hosted by Patrician Press at The Stables at James Figg. Grab a snack or a drink from the bar and enjoy free events, reading and poetry.

Music events include the ever-popular Rumsey’s Tea Concert, or the string quartet, Oxus, with Beer and Baroque at The Figg. And there’s Thame’s very own ‘Glyndebarn’ with the Music of Morse performed by the acclaimed touring opera group, Opera Anywhere.

For full programme details visit talfestival.org and keep an eye out in the Gazette as we will be featuring more of the events in the run-up to the festival.