ABOUT THE FESTIVAL
Q. Who runs Wimbledon BookFest?
It is run by the charity Wimbledon Arts who are committed to promoting arts and culture in the area. We have small paid team at the core and a huge amount of volunteers. The Festival was set up in 2007 by Tony Kane and Fiona Razvi and is supported by community partners including schools, libraries, businesses and the voluntary sector. We aim to cover our costs and any surplus that may be generated is ploughed into our Word Up! Education Programme. We currently work with over 70 local schools and over 5,000 young people take part every year.
Q. How are events programmed?
A. Our programming team work with publishers to put a broad and diverse range of events together. The festival is broad in scope and general in nature. We hold events in the fields of fiction, poetry, politics, history, current affairs, children's, general interest, sport, music and film. Wimbledon BookFest is a curated festival and unfortunately we do not have scope to programme events around unsolicited self-published work. Publishers and agents are asked to email our team from January 2020 for next year's Festival.
Q. What happens at an event?
A. Our events vary greatly, but our author events, unless otherwise stated, last for an hour. The author will give a talk, or be interviewed by an experienced interviewer or journalist. Seating is unallocated and doors generally open 15-20 minutes in advance of the start time (this depends on the previous event's finish time). Authors generally do a signing after an event and books are available to purchase at our bookshop onsite.
Q: Do I need to have read the book in advance?
A. No. But our bookseller, Waterstones will be onsite throughout the Festival if you would like to buy a copy of books by the authors who are attending. Just pop by our foyer.
Q. How can I get involved?
A. BookFest relies heavily on volunteers throughout the festival. Our stewards are an integral part of the team, and if you want to join us, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q. I am a teacher, how can I get my school involved?
A. We have a wide variety of initiative for schools and young people from author events to film making programmes. Authors who have done school events for at BookFest include Carol Ann Duffy, Michelle Paver, Benjamin Zephaniah, David Baddiel, George the Poet, Akala & the Hip Hop Shakespeare Company, Andrew Motion and Caroline Lawrence. To find out more about our Education Programme, email: email@example.com
AT THE FESTIVAL
Q. Can I buy books for the authors visiting?
A. Books will be on sale in our onsite through our Festival Bookshop run by Waterstones.
Q. Is it just books?
A. Although we are primarily a book festival, we have lots of other events to go alongside our fantastic authors, including films, music, comedy and sports related events.
Q. Can I take pictures at an event?
A. We love social media at BookFest, and we encourage you to get on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram and let us know what you're up to using the hashtag #Wimbookfest19. However, taking photos during the event itself can be distracting for the author or panel. Most authors will gladly have their photo taken with you at the signings after the event.
Q. Will there be wheelchair access at the site?
A. All the event locations are wheelchair accessible. We advise you to get in contact with firstname.lastname@example.org prior to attending so we can put any special arrangements in place.
Q . Are any of the events unsuitable for children?
A. We have a set calendar for children's events. We actively encourage teenagers and young people to attend the adult events, and we offer a 'Get Into BookFest' rate for Under-19s. There are however, a few events that have content of an adult nature - for example our comedy nights and are advised for over 16s only. See our events programme for more details.
Q. Will there be food and drink?
A. There will be a bar on the festival site to provide refreshments and a Cafe run by Bless serving snacks. Wimbledon Brewery will be providing draft beer at selected events.
There are an array of pubs, cafes and restaurants in Wimbledon Village and Town Centre.
Q. Will there be toilets onsite?
A. Yes, we will have toilets onsite, located very near to both the Baillie Gifford Big Tent, William Morris Tent and Robert Graves Gallery.
We take our audience’s safety seriously. We ask and advise you not to bring any large or unnecessary bags and security spot checks may be in operation.
If there is no answer to your query above, email email@example.com