Books by the Beach: Revealed: the page-turners who are appearing at festival

Marty Jopson
Marty Jopson

The former head of MI5 Dame Stella Rimington, broadcaster Jeremy Vine and actors Hugh Fraser, Robert Daws, George Costigan and Ruth Jones are all heading to Scarborough.

Best-selling authors Robert Goddard, Dame Denise Mina, Tony Parsons and Ben Aaronovitch are also among the guests at this year’s Books by the Beach.

The event runs at various venues in and around Scarborough from Wednesday April 11 to Sunday April 15.

The festival aims to reflect major anniversaries and will be celebrating 100 years of Votes for Women and the bicentenary of the publication of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstien.

There’s themed lunches and a fruity Brazilian breakfast with journalist Rosie Millard at the Palm Court. Share secrets and sensationalism with Rosie as she discusses her latest novel on Saturday April 14.

There’s a candlelit dinner at Wykeham Abbey Old Kitchen with bestselling writer David Hewson who will be talking about his retelling of Romeo and Juliet on Thursday April 12 at 7.30pm.

The Crescent Hotel will be flying the flag for Votes for Women on Wednesday April a11 nd inviting diners to share lunch with Suffragette expert Diane Atkinson.

Eat Me Cafe festival lunch brings a taste of London to the Stephen Joseph Bistro, serving pie, mash and liquor, on Friday April 13. Ben Aaronovitch is the special guest sharing tales about his writing for Dr Who and the bestselling Rivers of London series.

Crime writer Dame Denise Mina shares stage with Saul David as they discuss true crime to fiction on Friday April 13 at 5.30pm at Scarborough Library.

Journalist and author Tony Parsons will be chatting to crime critic Barry Forshaw on Saturday April 14 at 1pm and top thriller writer Robert Goddard introduces Panic, his new page turner on Thursday April 12 at 3pm.

Anne Bronte fans are invited to St Mary’s Church to hear about the other side of the overshadowed younger sibling. Author Samantha Ellis is Bronte aficionado on Thursday April 12.

Heather French, festival director, said: “I’m delighted to be building on our strong partnership with The Stephen Joseph Theatre. The Theatre in The Round is the setting we’ve chosen to host two of our festival highlights.”

Jeremy Vine will be appearing on Saturday April 14 at 3pm. Awardwinning comedy actor and screenwriter Ruth Jones will be launching her debut novel Never Greener on Sunday April 15 at 7pm.

Ators George Costigan, Robert Daws and Hugh Fraser who will be appearing together at Scarborough Library on Sunday April 15 at 5pm. Hugh is returning to Books by the Beach.

There’s also a celebrity scientist as BBC One show presenter Marty Jopson explores the science of food on Thursday April 12 at 5.30pm. Another star of the small screen, Yorkshire vet Julian Norton will be telling tales of creatures great and small on Sunday April 15 at 3pm.

Stella Rimington is in town on the Sunday. Royal secrets will be shared when biographer Katie Nicholls tells about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

Heather said: “The festival opens with a new look at the classics and Greek mythology. Former stand up comedian and broadcaster Natalie haynes will be opening the festival with her novel The Children of Jocasta - a new look at the Oedipus story. She’s a fantastic speaker.”