Bookmark Festival


21 - 29 April

Alastair Campbell will kick start this year’s festival which is packed full with a variety of inspiring speakers, authors, workshops and performances for all ages. Highlights include evenings with Guardian columnist Erwin James and Murder mystery maestros, Highly Suspect, as they return with their Harry Potter themed evening.

You can meet children’s favourites Nick Sharratt (Shark in the Park) and CBBC’s Katie Thistleton and explore the Moon in an interactive theatrical adventure for families. There is even a chance to have cream tea in the park and discuss all things Jane Austen.

Due to a change in scheduling, the Dr Julia Shaw event has been postponed until Spring 2018, date is to be announced. We apologise for this cancellation.

Alastair Campbell

Friday 21 April, 7pm

Oldham Library £2

Best known for being Tony Blair’s spokesperson and press secretary, Alastair Campbell will talk about his time in Downing Street and his books.

Emily Morris: Personal Blogging: Perks, Pitfalls and Power

Saturday 22 April, 11am-1pm

Oldham Library £2

In this workshop with award-winning blogger Emily Morris, you’ll learn about the benefits of personal blogging, the potential cons to consider before delving in.

The Moon and Me

Saturday 22 April, 11am, 1pm and 3pm

Oldham Library £2

A maximum of 20 audience members per performance

The Moon and Me is an interactive, intimate theatre experience about friendship and sharing for 2 – 5 year olds and their families. The show takes place inside a special dome, with lots of sensory play.

Mark Powers

Saturday 22 April, 2pm

Bookmark-It Tommyfield Market Hall

Free – drop in

Meet the author of Spy Toys, an action packed children’s series that has been described as Toy Story meets James Bond.

Celebrate World Book Night with Gary Jotter and the Magical Murders

Sunday 23 April, 4pm

Molino Lounge, 4 Parliament Square, Oldham

Free, advance booking essential

Fun, frivolity and fatalities guaranteed as murder maestros, Highly Suspect, return with their brand new magical murder mystery event. Please bring one of your favourite reads to swap as part of our world book night giveaway.

The Life of Crime - Elizabeth Haynes, Rachel Abbott and Daniel Cole

Tuesday 25 April, 7pm

Oldham Library £2

Join three writers of thrilling and nail bitingly tense stories as they discuss how and why they love writing about crime and punishment. Manchester’s own number one bestseller Rachel Abbott is joined by Daniel Cole, the author of Ragdoll, the hottest debut of 2017 and TV Book Club pick and the smash hit bestselling author Elizabeth Haynes.

Expect murder, mayhem and hot debate from this trio of writing talents.

Erwin James

Wednesday 26 April, 7pm

Oldham Library £2

Erwin was jailed for life at the age of 27 for murder. In prison he became a columnist for The Guardian. Erwin returns to Oldham library, by popular demand, for an inspiring evening as he shares his unforgettable journey that won’t fail to astonish and uplift you.

A toast to Burgess (Writing Workshop)

Thursday 27 April, 11am-1pm

Oldham Library £2

Are you the kind of droog whose creative writing needs a kick-start? This special workshop marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Anthony Burgess. Expect exercises, techniques and inspiration with a distinctly Burgessian feel.

William Walton, Celebrating the 80th anniversary of Crown Imperial

This event is presented in association with The William Walton Trust.

Thursday 27 April, 7pm

Oldham Library

Free, advanced booking essential

This special event with musical expert Stephen Lloyd, author of William Walton – Muse of Fire, marks the 80th anniversary of the first performance of Crown Imperial. An ensemble made up of staff and students from Oldham Music Service will play both Crown Imperial and Walton’s collaboration with Edith Sitwell, Façade.

Fern Hill and other Dylan Thomas

Performed by Guy Masterson

Friday 28 April, 7pm

Oldham Library £2

Experience the richness and magic of the English language at its very best as
Dylan Thomas' wonderful short stories and poems are brought vividly to life in an enchanting, award winning show.

Nick Sharratt

Friday 28 April, 12:15 – 12:45pm

Oldham Library

Free – drop in

Come and meet Nick Sharratt, illustrator of more than 250 books for children including, Shark in the Park and Pants. He is also the illustrator of books by Jacqueline Wilson and Jeremy Strong. Nick will be available for photos and signing copies of your favourite books.

Katie Thistleton

Saturday 29 April, 11:30am

Oldham Library £2

Join CBBC HQ and CBBC Book Club presenter Katie Thistleton for an hour of book-related fun and games. Two lucky winners will be invited up on stage to interview Katie as if they are a Book Club presenter.

Helena Kelly - Jane Austen: The Secret Radical

Saturday 29 April, 2pm

The Conservatory, Alexandra Park

Tickets £5 includes a cream tea

To mark the 200 years since the death of Jane Austen, Helena Kelly will be stripping away everything we know, or think we know, about Austen. Helena will uncover a radical, spirited and political engaged Austen, and encourage you to read her books, all over again.


Oldham Library, Greaves Street, Oldham, OL1 1AL

T: 0161 770 8000