Welcome to the Smithdown Litfest

The Smithdown Litfest 2024 will be from Wednesday 25th to Saturday 28th September. We’ll be announcing our line-up of guest speakers from spring 2024.

The Smithdown Litfest has author talks and readings for all ages, in community venues along the Smithdown Road corridor ‒ from Toxteth to Allerton. The aim of the Litfest is to present a programme of stimulating and enjoyable author events for local residents, and to encourage visitors from Liverpool and beyond to experience the culture and heritage in our area too. The Litfest attracts household names like Ann Cleeves, Chris Tarrant and Jimmy McGovern, as well as popular local authors.

The authors chat about their writing lives and books, and answer questions from the audience. Each event lasts for 1½ hours.

All proceeds from ticket sales go to good causes. Our cause for 2024 will be Smithdown in Bloom. In 2023 the Smithdown Litfest raised funds for four new planters in streets off Smithdown Road.

You will be able to buy your tickets online from Eventbrite or in person (cash or card) from Smithdown Social Arts Hub, 455 Smithdown Road (Tuesday to Saturday, midday to 6pm) from spring 2024 onwards.

Our Way with Words exhibition celebrates the people with a connection to our area who went on to great success in a career with words. It has previously been exhibited in Toxteth Library and Bean There Coffee Shop on Smithdown Road.

The Litfest was the idea of local resident Ian Skillicorn, who runs his own independent publishing company, and whose family connections to the Smithdown Road area go back to the 1800s. The Litfest also has the support of local venues. It is organised through a not-for-profit community interest company called Great Ideas Unlimited (Company No. 07185399) and everyone involved in organising the Litfest does so as an unpaid volunteer.

The Smithdown Litfest 2023 was supported by the Research Institute for Literature and Cultural History, Faculty of Arts, Professional and Social Studies at Liverpool John Moores University; and by Liverpool City Council’s Mayoral Neighbourhood Fund, courtesy of Cllr Lawrence Brown.

Some links of interest:

A short review of our first festival by Norma Cohen

Listen to our short story competition winner from 2020

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