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An afternoon in Todmorden

Todmorden Book Festival 


Todmorden's first ever Book Festival was be held in venues across Todmorden


It included talks, workshops, readings, film screenings and more!


Sally Wainwright, 23rd November 2018, was postponed due to a filming overrun. Sally will now appear at Todmorden Hippodrome Theatre on Saturday 2nd February at 7.30pm.


The BAFTA winner will discuss her 30-year writing career with Michelle Hodgson, director of Huddersfield Literature Festival. Sally Wainwright’s credits include the critically acclaimed Happy Valley and Last Tango in Halifax. Her latest drama for the BBC, Gentleman Jack, was filmed in Shibden Hall, Halifax and across Yorkshire and portrays the life of 19th century lesbian diarist and wealthy Halifax landowner Anne Lister, nicknamed ‘Gentleman Jack’ because of her penchant for dark, masculine clothing. Epic family ski breaks Cosy ski-in/ski-out accommodation, guaranteed snow and child-friendly slopes await. Promoted by Visit Norway The eight-part series is expected to hit TV screens this spring with a cast led by Suranne Jones, Sophie Rundle and Timothy West. Lister came from one of the most prominent families in Halifax and her estate, Shibden Hall, dating from the 15th century, is now a tourist attraction. Commenting on her new TV series, Wainwright said, “Anne Lister is a gift to a dramatist. She is one of the most exuberant, thrilling and brilliant women in British history. To bring Anne Lister to life on screen is the fulfilment of an ambition I’ve had for 20 years".

Tickets for A Life in Writing on Saturday 2 February at 7.30pm at Todmorden Hippodrome, are available from Todmorden Information Centre on 01706 818181

Todmorden Book Festival, which ran for the first time in November 2018, was a resounding success. The programme included fiction, non-fiction and poetry events for adults, young adults and children, reflecting the rich cultural heritage of the region and exploring individual and collective stories.

The next Todmorden Book Festival will take place in November 2019.


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The name Todmorden first appears in 1641 and is generally accepted to mean Totta’s boundary-valley, probably a reference to the valley running northwest from the town, although the name “marshy valley of the fox” has also been proposed. The earliest written record of the area is in the Domesday Book (1086), at which time most people were living in scattered farms or in isolated hilltop agricultural settlements. Packhorse trails were marked by ancient stones of which many still survive.

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