Latest News

  • 2019 Short Story Competition Results

    In total we received over 200 entries for this year’s short story competition. Many entries drew on important social issues such as dementia care or mental health, while others were packed with twists, turns and suprising final reveals. The competition has been judged by Lucy Caldwell, herself recently shortlisted for…more

  • 2019 Poetry and Short Story Competition Short Lists

    Walter Swan Poetry Prize Shortlist 2019 Now in its fourth year, the Walter Swan Poetry Prize is open to all writers of poetry aged 18 and over. This year, for the first time, we have introduced a new prize category for young writers aged 18-25, which runs along the main…more

  • Download the 2019 Programme

    We are delighted to bring you the 2019 Ilkley Literature Festival programme. From the Poet Laureate to emerging writers, from stars of stage and screen to leading academics and journalists, you’ll find lots to entertain, engage and inspire you. Headline names include David Suchet, Prue Leith, Alastair Campbell, Gyles Brandreth,…more

  • Other Events in and around Ilkley

    There’s lots happening in and around Ilkley in September and October. Don’t miss these fantastic events being run by our friends and partners. ______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Tuesday 24 September Poetry From Singapore School of English, University of Leeds, LS2 9JT 6.30pm FREE Don’t miss this exciting opportunity to hear from one of…more

  • David Suchet, Prue Leith and Clare Balding to Headline ILF19

    We are delighted to reveal some of the headline names who will be joining Poet Laureate Simon Armitage on the ILF programme this year. Star of stage and screen, David Suchet, will look back on his 50-year career via the many photographs he’s taken along the way. The much-loved actor…more

  • Young People’s Poetry Competition

    Our Young People’s poetry competition is open for entries and this year, inspired by the 50th anniversary of the moon landings we are asking for poems on the theme of Discovery. This can be any kind of discovery, not just scientific – it could be a personal discovery of a…more

  • Introducing the 2019 Apprentice Poets in Residence

    The ILF Apprentice Poet in Residence position is a prestigious one for early career poets and is usually awarded to one poet each year. This year the calibre of this year’s applications was exceptional prompting ILF to take the unprecedented step of offering the Apprentice role as a joint position….more

  • Colette Bryce to be Poet in Residence

    We are delighted to announce that award-winning Northern Irish poet Colette Bryce will be Poet in Residence at the 2019 Festival. Following in the footsteps of previous Poets in Residence including Imtiaz Dharker, Daljit Nagra, Andrew McMillan and Zaffar Kunial, Colette will be putting her own mark on the festival,…more

  • Support our campaign to bring more captioned events to ILF

    Give to our fundraising appeal to help people with hearing loss enjoy more ILF events, and Crowdfunder could DOUBLE your donation! There are 11 million people with hearing loss in the UK, that’s around one in six of us. Of this number there are around 50,000 children with hearing loss…more

  • New Poet Laureate Simon Armitage will open ILF 2019 on Friday 4 October

    We know you’ll join us in sending long-time Ilkley Literature Festival friend, supporter and creative collaborator Simon Armitage our warmest congratulations on receiving the UK’s highest literary honour. We are delighted to be able to reveal that the Poet Laureate will be opening the 2019 festival with a reading of…more