Shaun’s coming home for literary festival

BBC 6 Music's Leigh-born presenter Shaun Keaveny
BBC 6 Music's Leigh-born presenter Shaun Keaveny
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A TOP Leigh-born radio DJ will return to his hometown as the borough’s biggest literary festival hits town once again next month.

BBC 6Music breakfast show presenter Shaun Keaveny will host an evening discussing all things northern at the Turnpike Centre as part of the 2014 Words Festival.

Leigh will play a key role in the 13-day celebration of top-quality penmanship, with seven of the events taking place in the town and a variety of grass-roots artistic groups getting their chance to take the limelight and show off local talent.

Award-winning playwright Billy Cowan will run a workshop at the Turnpike Centre at an event also featuring Kate Collins’s monologue A Friend Request.

Bringing the past to life will also be discussed at a panel event on historical fiction writing, with Karen Maitland, Debra Daley and Elizabeth Ashworth talking about novels and research at Tyldesley Library, while Leigh Library will host award-winning author Robert Williams discussing his new work Into The Trees.

Local writers in Tyldesley will show off their skills at Cadence Cafe, while the Leigh and Atherton Writers will also hold their own showcase during the festival fortnight.

Younger bookworms are also well catered for, with Paul Stickland, whose books include Dinosaur Roar! and Big Bug, Little Bug, giving a fun masterclass in making pop-up monsters at Leigh Library. Festival organiser Carole Ogden said: “There’s something for everyone at this year’s Words Festival.

“Budding writers have the chance to tap in to the talent of popular authors and get advice about how to get their work noticed; there’s the chance to learn more about modern technology associated with reading, such as e-readers; and there’s even a writing workshop with a food-related theme.

“I’d encourage people to take a look at our programme to see what we’ve got on offer.”

Other well-known writers making the trip to the borough for the festival include Mark Olly, best known as the Man in Black on Sky History series Lost Treasures, and policeman-turned-author Matt Hilton, the creator of the Joe Hunter series of thrillers.

The 2014 Words Festival runs from Monday May 12 to Saturday May 24. To view the full programme of events and book tickets, visit