Enjoying it's second year, it will be a privilege to be able to welcome back to the festival Sir Andrew Motion, who last graced Wells in the days when he was Poet Laureate. Equally exciting is the presence of long-standing Wells resident Roger Law, whose recent work as a ceramicist is every bit as dazzling as the Spitting Image puppets that made his name.
These are both artists with international reputations, albeit rooted in East Anglia. Reflecting the regional theme - which we hope will make the festival distinctive - are writers much of whose work reflects the very special nature of this strip between the land and the sea. Amongst the most luminous is our old friend Kevin Crossley-Holland, one of the founders of PNTS. We are thrilled that he will be launching at the festival his new collaboration with photographer Andy Rafferty. This is Seahenge: A journey .
Local, too are Benjamin Britten and WH Auden – sadly long gone - both of whom attended Gresham’s in Holt, and whose own collaboration in Night Mail we will be celebrating. We are fortunate indeed to have persuaded the composer and film-maker Tony Britten to discuss this iconic film. And we are also thrilled that Julia Blackburn, whose new work (Timesong: Searching for Doggerland), so brilliantly reviewed, will also be joining us.
Finally – though it is invidious to pick out other individuals from our line-up – we are so pleased that our patron Matthew Hollis has agreed to present both a musical collaboration with Richard Scott, and some of his new work on The Wasteland. For obvious reasons Harold Pinter is unavailable, but we do very much hope you will enjoy our own homecoming to Wells Maltings.