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Sandi Toksvig attracts crowd at opening of Farnham’s first literary festival

Female on stage speaking into a microphone

The Farnham Literary Festival got off to a cracking start on Saturday with a sell-out opening event.

Broadcaster, actor, comedian, novelist and producer Sandi Toksvig was the star attraction of the evening with a 20-minute talk which was both thought-provoking and humorous. She charmed the audience with a tale about how she had worked on her latest book in the Blue Bear bookshop and spoke knowledgeably about Farnham which she got to know while recently house-hunting. 

Ms Toksvig described how delighted she was to open the Farnham Literary Festival. She touched on the importance of embracing our freedoms and how writing is vital for freedom of expression before taking questions from the audience. 

Second on stage was Jack Jewers who is a filmmaker and writer. During a question and answer style discussion, author Christi Daugherty coaxed Jack into sharing his passion for telling stories in all media. 

The final guest appearance was by bestselling crime fiction writer Sophie Hannah. Sophie was interviewed by Rob Verner-Jeffreys from Waterstones bookshop and talked about her work.

Speaking after the opening, Councillor Alan Earwaker, Mayor of Farnham said: ”It was wonderful to welcome three such highly acclaimed names from the world of literature. On the same day as the festival launch, there were several other events happening at venues across Farnham which demonstrated the diversity and accessibility of the Farnham Literacy Festival. Events included book valuations, an exploration of picture books for 7- to 11-year-olds and a workshop about building your own fantasy world.”

Over the last few days of Farnham’s inaugural Literary Festival there will be workshops, panel discussions, the presentation of the Farnham Fiction Award, a talk by Jeremy Hunt MP about his new book and the Farnham Shakespeare Walks. 

Full details about the festival programme and details about how to book can be found at

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