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National treasures and local authors in line-up

National treasures and local first-time authors are among the latest exciting names revealed for this year’s Henley Literary Festival, including Michael Palin, Zeinab Badawi, Dawn O’Porter, Roger McGough and Supertato creator Sue Hendra.

The 18th annual Festival will host over 100 conversations, talks, performances and workshops for adults and children from September 28 to October 6.

Michael Palin returns for the first time since a 2012 sell-out with the latest volume of his diaries, while Channel 4 and BBC news veteran Zeinab Badawi makes her Festival debut with An African History of Africa. Two of the country’s best-loved poets are on the line-up in Roger McGough and Pam Ayres.

Bestsellers Dawn O’Porter and Bella Mackie, author of How To Kill Your Family, will be in conversation about their highly anticipated latest novels, Honeybee and What a Way to Go, both to be published shortly before the Festival.

Festival favourite Gyles Brandreth, BAFTA-winning comedian Danny Wallace, gardening expert Sarah Raven, Strictly judge Anton du Beke and bestselling military historian Damien Lewis will all be appearing at the Festival. As ever the Festival contains a strong local contingent, including journalist Helen Chandler-Wilde with her memoir Lost & Found and The Greatest American Football Story That Has Never Been Told author Anthony Wootton.

Events for children will include Supertato creator Sue Hendra, alongside the previously announced Julia Donaldson and Jonnie Peacock. Other speakers already confirmed for the Festival include David Nicholls, Elif Shafak, Rupert Everett and Laura Dockrill.

Many more speakers will be announced in the coming months, ahead of tickets going on sale to Friends of the Festival on July 9 and general sale on July 15. In addition to priority booking, Friends receive exclusive offers. Friends membership is available here and on 01491 575948 (10am-2pm Monday -Thursday).

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