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Climate change on the bill at Ilkley Literature Festival

Centre news
Press release

Academics from the Priestley Centre are contributing to a range of events with a climate change theme as part of the North of England’s longest running literature festival, which returns this autumn.

The Ilkley Literature Festival has announced its stellar line-up for this year’s event, which runs from 28 September until 14 October and comprises 240 events across 15 venues.

The University of Leeds is Higher Education Partner for the festival and there are a record number of University events as part of the 2018 programme.

The Festival features everything from cricket to food and poetry to politics, with speakers including Nadia Hussein, Kate Mosse, Terry Deary and Jacqueline Wilson. Climate change is a part of the mix and approached from very different angles, from the Romantic period of literature to the new geological age of the Anthropocene.

Dr David Higgins from the School of English will tackle the links between Frankenstein and climate change (9 October) while Simon Lewis, Professor of Global Change Science at the University of Leeds and University College London, talks with co-author Mark Maslin about how understanding the history of human action can shine a light on our current environmental crisis in The Human Planet (29 September).

Active Priestley Centre member James Mckay, of the School of Chemical and Process Engineering – who is also a talented graphic artist – will be discussing the creation of a book he wrote and co-illustrated, A Dream of a Low Carbon Future, as part of a “Climate Solutions Chat” to help imagine a positive, zero carbon future for Yorkshire (3 October).

James will also be painting a vision of a Zero Carbon Future for Ilkely, at which members of the public can have their portrait included in the picture while they talk to renewable energy researchers from Leeds (13 October).

Professor Frank Finlay, Director of the University’s Cultural Institute, said: “I am really pleased to see a record number of University events at this year’s Ilkley Literature Festival.  Our collaboration is a wonderful way to give our students and staff exciting opportunities to interact with large and diverse audiences, to engage with the wider world of ideas and to share new knowledge.”

Rachel Feldberg, Festival Director, saidː “The carefully curated line-up for 2018 includes some of the biggest names in literature as well as some of the most well-respected experts in history, poetry, non-fiction and science.”

The full Ilkley Literature Festival programme is available to download at Tickets will be on sale online and through the box office 01943 816 714 from 28 August.

To find out more about the Festival Friends scheme and how to join, visit: . Applications are open until 20 August.