The Festival is run by a permanent team year round who are joined by around 25 freelance staff at Festival time:
Rachel has been at ILF since 2003, having worked in touring theatre as a writer and director in a previous life. She is responsible for the overall running and programming of the Festival which gives her lots of opportunities to meet her favourite authors.
She loves books by Rose Tremain, Kate Grenville, Maya Angelou and George Eliot and spends her spare time playing as much music as possible and wandering round art galleries.
Erica has worked in the arts and heritage sector for over ten years, spending time working for The National Trust, Harrogate International Festivals and Theatre by the Lake. She also oversaw the opening in 2014 of The Witham, an arts centre in Barnard Castle, following a major redevelopment project.
Studying English Literature and Language at the University of Manchester left her with a lifelong love of the writing of Henry James, whiling away hours in gothic libraries and rainhoods on coats.
Kate has worked in events management for over 12 years and joins the festival as Volunteers Coordinator. She has worked on many kinds of events, both in the UK and overseas, including food & wine, arts and fashion festivals.
Having grown up in the Wharfe Valley, Kate currently lives in Ilkley. When not working on the festival she runs her own home ware and interior design business. She studied English literature at A’ Level and History at University so its little surprise that Bryce Courtney features as one of her favourite authors, along with Louis de Bernieres and Maya Angelo.
After completing a Masters in Children’s Literature at Newcastle University, Alex worked at Harrogate International Festivals for a number of years, before joining ILF in 2014.
Her favourite book is probably Matilda, but this changes depending on the day of the week. She also knows a lot about 1950’s British pony stories. She likes knitting and is inexplicably a fan of Welsh Rugby despite not being Welsh.
Pakeezah has been gobbling good reads from a very early age and has worked in the arts since the completion of her MA degree in Postcolonial Literatures and Cultures from the University of Manchester.
She enjoys baking cake, drinking copious amounts of tea and running to keep fit (she likes eating cake too). Although she isn’t brave enough to pick a favourite book, she finds herself recommending The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje and Rumi’s poetry to most people who ask.
Pakeezah is excited by the potential of the written word and how literature helps us to make sense of the world around us.
Alison has managed and delivered educational projects for 8 years, alongside her practice as an artist and facilitator. Her areas of expertise include using digital tools to engage children and young people and she has a keen interest in combining the arts and technology.
Outside of ILF Alison makes sculptural lighting and installations using recycled materials, and runs workshops encouraging others to be creative with waste!
After completing a Master’s degree in English Literature at the University of Leeds, Ellie joined the Ilkley team as Festival Assistant. She is especially interested in gendered representations of the body in literature. Her dissertation considers the connections between corporeality and identity in Jean Rhys’s fiction, and analyses depictions of pregnancy and child-birth in her work.
When not reading, Ellie contributes towards a magazine she founded with University friends, obsesses over Frida Kahlo and thinks about food.
Press – Anita Morris Associates.
Technical Director – Richard Speight of Spot-On Theatre Services.
Graphic Design – Richard Honey of dg3.
Web Site Development – Johnathan Kendall of vitamin K.
Book sales are handled by our local booksellers, The Grove Bookshop, an independent book shop run by Kevin Ramage, who also owns the award winning Watermill in Aberfeldy.