Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival 2020 Cancelled
by Sarah Morgan
Arts lovers received some sad but not entirely unexpected news when Harrogate International Festivals announced its decision to cancel its summer season, including the eagerly awaited Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival.
Held annually at the town’s Swan Hotel, it regularly attracts some of the biggest, brightest and acclaimed names in the genre, with JK Rowling, Ian Rankin (who was to be this year’s chair) and John Grisham rubbing shoulders with Val McDermid and Mark Billingham over the years.
But it’s not all doom and gloom. In July, the winner of the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year 2020 will still be announced. We’re also promised an extensive online offering of author interviews and much more.
The event’s organiser is launching the HIF Player, which gives those tuning in a ‘virtual festival experience’ via archive event recordings, digital book clubs, learning resources for children and activities for little ones. We’re promised it will be regularly updated with new content to keep audiences entertained.
Among the gems that can currently be found on the site is former stand-up comedian Billingham’s chat with old mate Eddie Izzard and the late, great MC Beaton, creator of Hamish Macbeth and Agatha Raisin, in conversation with comedian Fred MacAulay, both recorded during the 2015 event.
Other big names available to watch include Sara Paretsky, Lee Child and Belinda Bauer.
For more information, visit HIF Player