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The Festival in a Factory 2019

Thursday 6 June–Saturday 8 June 2019

The Festival in a Factory is back!

From award-winning authors to world-renowned experts, poets and entertainersThe Festival in a Factory is an eclectic celebration of culture and creativity in the inspiring surroundings of the Emma Bridgewater Factory where Emma has manufactured her iconic handmade and hand-decorated pottery for more than twenty years.

Join us for three exciting days of author talks, panel discussions and hands-on workshops in surprising spaces from the old pottery warehouse to the cobbled courtyard.

2019 programme highlights also include V&A Meet the Curator events on Frida Kahlo and Christian Dior, Greenpeace Oceans campaigner Will McCullum on the giving up plastic and National Trust Head of Research Nino Strachey on the Bloomsbury Group, plus great children’s authors, free poetry and family activities too.

Curated by trustees’ designer and pottery manufacturer Emma Bridgewater and Director of the Victoria & Albert Museum and former Stoke Central MP Tristram Hunt, the Festival brings together people of all ages for stimulating encounters in this most creative of cities.

Marketing and Box Office supported by The New Vic Theatre

Event tickets £8.

Book online at www.festivalinafactory.co.uk  or New Vic Box Office: 01782 381381

 

To see the Festival’s full schedule please click here or see below…

Thursday 6 June – Emma Bridgewater Factory, Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent. ST1 3EJ.

 Lauren Child

11am  – The Meakin Room


The Festival is delighted to welcome multi-award-winning, bestselling writer and artist and Waterstones Children’s Laureate LAUREN CHILD, the inventive and creative mind behind beloved children’s book characters Clarice Bean, Ruby Redfort and Charlie and Lola, to open the Festival in a Factory 2019.
One of today’s most innovative and highly regarded writers and artists, Lauren’s books are loved the world over, winning multiple awards, including the acclaimed Kate Greenaway Medal. She is the renowned creator of the Charlie and Lola characters who appear in their own Bafta-winning television animation, as well as an accomplished novelist.  Lauren’s latest book, Hubert Horatio: How to Raise Your Grown-Ups, focuses on boy genius millionaire Hubert Horatio Bartle Bobton-Trent. Join Lauren at the Factory for a fun talk for children and adults alike for our opening Festival event.

Click here to book this event

Mary Portas

 12.30pm – The Meakin Room
By most people’s standards Mary Portas has had a pretty good career. She’s reached the top of the ‘ladder’ and been lucky enough to have had a good life. But at what cost? Mary rebuilt her own business on the values that matter: collaboration, empathy, instinct and trust. Values not always associated with leadership or winning, but which made her and her team feel good. And it worked. Now in Work Like a Woman Mary calls for radical re-evaluation of how we all work and challenges us all – women and men – to make the way we work better, where ever that is and whatever we are doing.

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A.N. Wilson – Victoria: a life
2.00pm – The Meakin Room

To many, Queen Victoria is a ruler shrouded in myth and mystique – an aging, stiff widow, paraded as the figurehead to an all-male imperial enterprise. But in truth, Britain’s longest reigning monarch was one of the most passionate, expressive, humorous and unconventional women who ever lived. Acclaimed Staffordshire-raised biographer, novelist and columnist A. N. Wilson makes a return visit to the Festival to reveal Victoria as a brave, original woman at the very epicentre of Britain’s changing place in the world.
Click here to book this event

 

Rachel Reeves: Women of Westminster
3.30pm – The Meakin Room

In the century since women first gained the vote, almost 500 have been elected to the House of Commons, yet it was not until 2015 that the total number of women ever elected surpassed the number of male MPs in a single parliament. Rachel Reeves (MP for Leeds West since 2010) new book “Women of Westminster” celebrates the remarkable achievements of these political pioneers from the earliest suffrage campaigns, to Barbara Castle’s fight for equal pay, to Harriet Harman’s recent legislation on the gender pay gap.

Rachel also examines why it is that, despite Britain having now had two female Prime Ministers and women MPs having made significant strides in the fight for gender equality, the stories of many of the Women of Westminster have too often been overlooked in political histories.
Click here to book this event

V&A – Meet the Curator: Frida Kahlo
3.30pm – The Old Pottery Warehouse

Claire Wilcox, Senior Curator of Fashion & Textile at the V&A, shares highlights of the museum’s recent exhibition which presented an extraordinary collection of personal artefacts and clothing belonging to the iconic Mexican artist Frida Kahlo.

Locked away for 50 years after her death, this was the first exhibition of this collection outside Mexico and presented a fresh perspective on Kahlo’s life story through her most intimate belongings.
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V&A – Meet the Curator: Christian Dior
5.00pm – The Meakin Room

V&A Curator of Fashion & Textile Oriole Cullen visits the Factory to share highlights of the museum’s new landmark Christian Dior exhibition. Spanning from 1947 to the present day, it traces the history and impact of one of the 20th century’s most influential couturiers, exploring the enduring influence of the fashion house and Dior’s relationship with Britain.
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Tom Baldwin: Conrtol, Alt, Delete
5.00pm – The Old Pottery Warehouse

Something has gone badly wrong: people loathe politicians, distrust the press and increasingly fear each other. Ctrl Alt Delete is a brutally honest and sometimes funny account of how our democracy was crashed — and whether we can still re-boot it. Interviewing everyone from Tony Blair to Michael Gove, top journalists to Russian bloggers, and tech giant execs to online activists, Tom Baldwin will describe a vicious battle for control of the news agenda, at the expense of public trust and the value of truth. He will also share how technological change has hollowed out space for virulent new populist alternatives, including the so-called ‘alt-right’ and ‘alt-left’. And will also warn that not only extremists, but also the progressive centre, may now decide to press ‘delete’ on liberal democracy altogether.

Tom Baldwin has spent the best part of three decades at the centre of politics and the media. He has been communications director for the Labour Party, political editor of The Sunday Telegraph, assistant editor of The Times, and The Times’ Washington bureau chief.

‘Written with characteristic gusto and insight, this is a no-holds-barred indictment of the democratic and civic crisis we face today.’ — Tristram Hunt
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Nadine Dorries
6.30pm – The Old Pottery Warehouse

MP for Mid Bedfordshire Nadine Dorries is the author of the No. 1 bestselling Four Streets trilogy and a series of novels set in streets and hospitals of Liverpool and her favourite place in the world, the west coast of Ireland. Nadine visits the Festival to discuss her twin careers of writing and politics in what is sure to be a lively and fascinating event.
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William McCullum: How To Give Up Plastic
6.30pm – The Meakin Room

Around 12.7 million tonnes of plastic are entering the ocean every year, killing over 1 million seabirds and 100,000 marine mammals. By 2050 there could be more plastic in the ocean than fish by weight. Plastic pollution is the environmental scourge of our age, but how can YOU make a difference?

Will McCallum is Head of the Oceans campaign at Greenpeace UK and has been working with governments and companies to prevent our plastic crisis, as well as researching what everyday consumers can do to reduce plastic pollution. Will has put everything he’s learnt into his accessible guide How to Give Up Plastic and will share tips and tricks to help you reduce your plastic footprint in your homes, communities and workplaces.

Plastic is not going away without a fight. We need a movement made up of billions of individual acts, bringing people together from all backgrounds and all cultures, the ripples of which will be felt from the smallest village to the tallest skyscrapers. Will’s book and message is a call to arms – to join forces across the world and to end our dependence on plastic. #BreakFreeFromPlastic
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Viv Groskop: How To Own The Room
8.00pm – The Meakin Room

Viv Groskop is a writer, stand-up comedian and TV and radio presenter. A late-in-life starter in stand-up comedy and broadcasting, she has transitioned from journalism to live work by studying successful women speakers and performers with the beady eye of a life-long professional critic. She is the veteran of three sold-out five star Edinburgh Fringe shows. As an executive performance coach, she works with women across business, media and advertising, helping them to hone their authority, presence and leadership.
Click here to book this event

 

Friday 7 June – Emma Bridgewater Factory, Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent. ST1 3EJ.

Andrew Roberts: Churchill
12.30pm – The Meakin Room

When we seek an example of great leaders with unalloyed courage, the person who comes to mind is Winston Churchill: the iconic, visionary war leader immune from the consensus of the day, who stood firmly for his beliefs when everyone doubted him. But how did young Winston become Churchill? What gave him the strength to take on the superior force of Nazi Germany when bombs rained on London and so many others had caved?

Bestselling, award-winning author of Napoleon and The Storm of WarAndrew Roberts will share with festival-goers his landmark biography of Winston Churchill, based on extensive new material including transcripts of War Cabinet meetings, diaries, letters and unpublished memoirs from Churchill’s contemporaries, that reveals the true genius of the man, statesman and leader.
Click here to book this event

For the Love of Trees – poetry event
2.00pm – The Old Pottery Warehouse

Janie Hextall and Barbara McNaught share readings from their latest anthology of poetry about woods, trees and orchards. Trees are all around us, taken for granted, marking the seasons, and forming the backdrop to our daily lives. Who hasn’t got a favourite tree? Climbed a tree? Sat in the shade of a tree? Picked up a conker? Who hasn’t walked happily through a wood? As Ralph Waldo Emerson says ‘The wonder is that we can see these trees and not wonder more.’ Here are poems that reflect that wonder. A wonder that we feel and want to share.

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National Trust – Nino Strachey: Bloomsbury Group
2.00pm – The Meakin Room

Virginia Woolf famously concluded, ‘A woman must have money and a room of her own to write fiction.’ Nino Strachey, National Trust Head of Research and herself descended from members of the Bloomsbury Group, explores the homes of Virginia Woolf, her lover Vita Sackville-West, and Vita’s first cousin Eddy – the man who stood between Vita and Knole, the house she loved but could not inherit. In her book Rooms of their Own Nino brings together stories of love, desire and intimacy, with vivid accounts of the settings in which they took place, and offers fresh insights into the complicated interlocking lives of the Bloomsbury Group.
Click here to book this event

Jenny Uglow: Mr Lear
3.30pm – The Meakin Room

Acclaimed biographer Jenny Uglow brings us a joyful and moving appreciation of Edward Lear’s extraordinary life and work. From troubled childhood to striving artist, she tracks his swooping moods, passionate friendships and restless travels. His ‘nonsenses’ are elegantly unpicked, his complex poetic genius revealed. Jenny Uglow’s latest book, Mr Lear: A Life of Art and Nonsense is an illustrated biography of Lear, as natural history artist, landscape painter, travel writer and loveable outsider – as well as the much-loved author of ‘The Owl and the Pussy-Cat’ and a host of hilarious limericks.

A critic and consultant for over 40 years Jenny regularly appears in the Guardian, the New York Review of Books or through her blog in the NYR Daily She also writes for The New Yorker, The Times Literary Supplement, and The Beano. Her other books include: In These Times: Living in Britain through Napoleon’s Wars, 1793-1815,Elizabeth Gaskell: A Habit of Stories, Hogarth: A Life and a World , The Lunar Men: The Friends who Made the Future,Nature’s Engraver: A Life of Thomas Bewick,A Gambling Man: Charles II and the Restoration and The Pinecone: The Story of Sarah Losh.
Click here to book this event

Mel Sheratt
5.00pm – The Meakin Room

Best-selling Stoke-on-Trent author Mel Sherratt, who started her writing career after being made redundant, returns to the Festival to share more about her fantastic publishing success, her characters and writing about her home town. After achieving huge success self-publishing her work, Mel will be discussing Tick Tock, her brand new book and second with HarperCollins – one of the world’s biggest publishing houses

Opening in 2014, Tick Tock is a gripping and gritty police procedural featuring DS Grace Allendale, set in and around Stoke-on-Trent, and begins with the death of a young woman strangled while out running early one morning. Flip back to the present day and another young woman is strangled while out running in broad daylight and another is found strangled two days later. When there is an attempt on a third woman’s life Grace realises they could have a copycat serial killer. 

Featuring familiar North Staffordshire locations including Hanley’s Central Forest Park, Tick Tock was released in May 2019 has received praise from fellow authors Ian Rankin and Martina Cole who calls the book ‘a terrific read’.

Click here to book this event.

Elizabeth Day: How To Fail
7.00pm – The Meakin Room

Inspired by her hugely popular podcast, How To Fail, novelist and former Observer journalist Elizabeth Day’s shares her brilliantly funny, painfully honest and insightful celebration of things going wrong. Part memoir, part manifesto, How to Fail is based on the simple premise that understanding why we fail ultimately makes us stronger. Uplifting, inspiring and rich in stories from her own life, Elizabeth reveals that failure is not what defines us; rather it is how we respond to it that shapes us as individuals.
Click here to book this event

 

Saturday 8 June – Emma Bridgewater Factory, Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent. ST1 3EJ.

Barbara Mitchellhill
11.00am – The Old Pottery Warehouse

Damian Drooth is a super sleuth, a number 1 detective and a boy who has a nose for trouble… He’s determined to clean up the world so criminals better beware! Join author Barbara Mitchellhill for a fun packed session of stories and adventure ideal for readers aged 7+. Barbara is an award winning children’s author who began writing for BBC Children’s television and went on to produce series books for young readers (including the ‘No 1 Boy Detective’) as well as fast and furious historical adventures for older children.

PLEASE NOTE: Tickets for this event – £5.00
Click here to book

The Adventures of Freddie Malone with Clive Mantle
12.30pm – The Old Pottery Warehouse

Freddie Malone and the Treasure at the Top of the World

When Freddie Malone is given an ancient map for his birthday by his eccentric uncle, it seems an odd gift, but Freddie is thrilled. Little does he realise that the mysterious map is about to turn his world upside down. Plunged into a perilous adventure between two worlds, and pursued in turn by a ruthless bully and a determined adversary who will each go to any lengths to get what they want, Freddie must fight for what’s right – and for his very life. A thrilling adventure for young readers aged 8+.

Find out more about Freddie’s amazing adventures in this exhilarating page-turner encompassing history, action and adventure with award winning children’s author and  well-loved actor CLIVE MANTLE who brings the drama of his TV, film and stage career in our best loved TV shows from Thomas the Tank Engine, to doctor Mike Barrett in BBC’s Holby City, to Greatjon Umber in Game of Thrones and Little John in the ITV’s classic Robin of Sherwood, to the first in a thrilling series of incredible time-travel adventures.

PLEASE NOTE: Tickets for this event – £5.00
Click here to book

Clover Stroud
2.00pm – The Old Pottery Warehouse

Writer, broadcaster and journalist, Clover Stroud, will be in conversation at the Festival about her memoir The Wild Other, a gripping and honest account of love, loss, family, the healing strength of nature and an extraordinary life lived at its fullest.

Following a traumatic accident that left Clover’s mother horrifically brain damaged, Clover embarked on a wild journey taking her to the brink of self-destruction where she sought wild experiences in the form of wild horses, sex, narcotics and wild men. This early experience of loss and trauma has informed everything Clover has done since which she recounts in this powerful and moving memoir of love, loss, motherhood, sex and danger.

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Kamal Ahmed: The Life & Times of a Very British Man
2.00pm – The Meakin Room

Former BBC Economics editor  Kamal Ahmed had a very British 1970s childhood: a Raleigh racing bike, Adidas Gazelle trainers, cord trousers – and regularly being told to “go home”, even though he’d been born just down the road. Today, tensions over immigration and Europe have brought some of the attitudes to race that we might have hoped had gone the way of 1970s rainbow jumpers, ferociously to the forefront of British life. As one of the first generation of mixed-race Brits, Ahmed is perfectly placed to explore the conversation around race and identity today. Join him for personal anecdotes, political analysis, and passionate belief in the ultimate good of this country.
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Matthew Rice
3.30pm – The Old Pottery Warehouse

Emma Bridgewater designer and illustrator Matthew Rice discusses the importance of architecture in this fascinating talk entitled When Julius Cesar Came to Stoke-on-Trent – Why It’s Important What a Building Looks Like.

Click here to book this event

Tom Holland: Aethelflaed
3.30pm – The Meakin Room

Who was Æthelflæd?
What role did she play in the founding of England?
How has her legacy lasted to this day?

DISCOVER the epic history of England’s forgotten queen. Planting cities, sponsoring learning and defeating her people’s enemies, Æthelflæd laid the foundations of a kingdom that lasts to this day. Tom Holland’s Æthelflæd puts a spotlight on this formidable leader, pulling her out of the shadowy history of the dark ages.

THE MOST INFLUENTIAL WOMAN THAT ENGLISH HISTORY FORGOT. Watch Tom’s short film to find out more about the Lady of the Mercians.

Tom Holland presents BBC Radio 4’s Making History and is the author of Rubicon: The Triumph and Tragedy of the Roman Republic, which won the Hessell-Tiltman Prize for History and was shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize. He has adapted Homer, Herodotus, Thucydides and Virgil for the BBC and in 2016 wrote a history of Æthelstan, who was the nephew of Æthelflæd and raised in her court.

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Ben McIntyre: The Spy & The Traitor
5.00pm – The Meakin Room

Multimillion-copy, bestselling author of books including Agent Zigzag, Operation Mincemeat, A Spy Among Friends and SAS: Rogue Heroes Ben Macintyre visits the Festival to reveal one of the boldest and most extraordinary episodes in the history of British spying. In his latest book The Spy and The Traitor about a KGB double agent, Ben explores a tale of espionage, betrayal and raw courage that changed the course of the Cold War forever…

‘The best true spy story I have ever read’ John Le Carre

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Deborah Moggach and Celia Imrie in conversation
7.00pm – The Meakin Room

Celia Imrie, the Olivier award-winning actress and best-selling novelist, and Deborah Moggach, best-selling author of the novel which was made into the hit movie The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, will be in discussion for a fascinating finale to the Festival in a Factory 2019.  Celia Imrie is known for her film roles in Calendar Girls, The Second Best and Best Exotic Marigold Hotel and Finding Your Feet, and onstage in, most recently, King Lear at The Old Vic and Pinter at the Pinter. Her latest novel, A Nice Cup of Tea, is out in May.
Deborah Moggach’s writing career as a screenwriter and bestselling author has seen her pen 19 novels, including Tulip Fever, These Foolish Things and In The Dark as well as hugely successful writing projects including BAFTA nominated screenplay of Pride and Prejudice. Her forthcoming book the The Carer will be available one month ahead of publication for anyone attending the festival!

Click here to book this event

 

 

Marketing and Box Office supported by The New Vic Theatre

Event tickets £8.

Book online at www.festivalinafactory.co.uk  or New Vic Box Office: 01782 381381

 

To see the full programme and to keep up-to-date with the latest festival news, visit www.festivalinafactory.co.uk or follow us on Facebook or Twitter @SOTLitFestival

Thursday 6 June–Saturday 8 June 2019

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