Education Programme at Wimbledon BookFest

Wimbledon BookFest has two sides to its work - its public Festival in October and its year round Education Programme with local schools.

The Education Programme is funded through grants and school sponsorship and works closely with our Lead Education Partner, University of Roehampton. Roehampton students often contribute to Festival Times, which provides an opportunity to showcase their journalism.

Teachers can email Laura Byrne, education manager at for more information.

Author Events

Author events are run for primary and secondary schools as motivators to encourage literacy. These range from picture book authors and illustrators to storytellers, poets and novelists. Older students have visits from journalists, politicians and screenwriters and writing workshops.

The 2019 author programme included Malorie Blackman, Cressida Cowell, Simon Armitage, Greg James & Chris Smith, Dougie Poynter and Konnie Huq.

Previous authors include: Benjamin Zephaniah, Carol Ann Duffy, Sir John Major, George the Poet, Michael Rosen, David Baddiel, Jacqueline Wilson and Steve Backshall.

To celebrate World Book Day 2019, BookFest put on events with Dermot O'Leary, Tom Fletcher and Frank Cottrell Boyce at New Wimbledon Theatre.

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Gifted Books Initiative

Reading is regularly cited as one of the greatest contributory factors to social mobility. Every year over 2000 free books are given to children with a deprived socio-economic demographic and little engagement in reading.

Young Writers' Competition

Wimbledon BookFest's annual competition attracts entries from 60+ local schools every year who are inspired to write creative stories and poems. The top entries are published as part of a collection of stories and poems to encourage young people's creativity. The theme for 2020 is 'The Secret'.


Through a partnership with educational film specialists Chocolate Films students attend workshops teaching filmmaking skills. Students are introduced to careers in the creative industries and taught how to tell stories through film. Films are then publically screened at the Festival. The Take Ten Project allows students to work with professional film makers to make documentary portraits of today's Londoner. This project was funded by the Wimbledon Foundation.

Student Panel

Sixth formers from local schools make up a panel that meets regularly to develop the festival's events to attract and engage a younger audience. Events have included performance poetry, the future of journalism and the politics of gender, as well as an annual gig night hosted by Radio X's John Kennedy. Find out more.

Stewarding & Volunteering

Wimbledon BookFest offers opportunities for sixth formers in local schools to steward at the festival. Find out more.

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Please click here to view our Education Sponsors