Crime writing festival line-up unveiled

Mark Billingham and Simon Theakston at the launch of Theakston's Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival. (S)
Mark Billingham and Simon Theakston at the launch of Theakston's Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival. (S)

THE line-up for Harrogate’s Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival has been announced at a party at Brown’s Courtrooms in London’s Covent Garden.

With a plethora of press, publishers and authors in attendance, the 2012 programme was revealed, with welcome speeches from Harrogate International Festival’s chief executive Sharon Canavar, executive director of T&R Theakston, the Festival’s title sponsor, Simon Theakston, and 2012 programming chairman Mark Billingham.

Ranked one of the top three literary festivals in the UK by the Guardian, this year, the Theakstons Old Peculier Crime Writing festival celebrates its tenth festival.

To mark the occasion, the cream of international crime fiction will once again gather in Harrogate to raise a glass of Theakstons’ finest to the biggest festival championing crime writing.

Headlining the festival this summer are heavyweights Jo Nesbo, Harlan Coben, John Connolly, Kate Mosse, Peter Robinson, Peter James and Ian Rankin.

Each year the festival is chaired by a different high-profile crime writer, this year popular British author Mark Billingham, creator of Jack Thorne, takes the helm.

Other highlights include a dedicated look at award-winning BBC TV series Luther, with author/screenwriter Neil Cross, journalist Miranda Sawyer and cast and crew; Swedish superstar Camilla Lackberg on the success of Scandinavian crime fiction; Creative Thursday – a master class in writing crime fiction; Dragon’s Pen, where punters get a chance to pitch their would-be bestsellers to a panel of professionals; and Val McDermid reveals the most exciting emerging crime authors in her New Blood panel.

For the second year, Harrogate International Festivals and the box office at Harrogate Theatre are working together to offer a range of ticket booking options, and following last week’s glittering launch, Weekend Rovers, Day Rovers and individual event tickets are now officially on sale.

Tickets are available from the Box Office on 01423 502116 or online at