2.30pm New Headingley Club,
St Michael’s Road
Saturday 25 March
In conversation with:
The Yorkshire Shepherdess Amanda Owen
Amanda Owen (41 years old) has been seen by millions on ITV’s
The Dales and in Ben Fogle’s New Lives in the Wild and is
currently appearing on ITV1’s Countrywise.
She runs a two
thousand acre hill farm in Swaledale in North Yorkshire,
from the nearest large town. She is a full time shepherdess
a thousand sheep and has nine children with farmer husband
Her life is dominated by the seasons, feeding, clipping, dipping,
rescuing and lambing her flock in one of the most
remotely beautiful yet
tough spots in the country. Amanda is a working
mother with nine
children between the ages of 4 months and 16 years and
has never taken maternity leave. As soon as she returns from
Amanda simply straps her new born onto her front in a waterproof
and heads back out to the hills to tend her sheep, with two toddlers trailing
behind. Each of her nine children has been brought up this way, outside in
fresh air all day without many of the trappings of modern parenthood,
waking and sleeping with the rhythm of the farm
In A Year in the Life of the Yorkshire Shepherdess the reader joins
Amanda as she describes the age-old cycles of a farming year and the constant challenges the family faces: from being cut off in winter to tending their flock on some of the country’s highest, wildest moors - land so inaccessible that in places it can only be reached on foot.
Writing with her trademark warmth and humour, Amanda tells us how her nine-year-old son Miles got his first flock, Reuben took up the flugelhorn and she herself gave birth to a new baby girl. She shares the touching stories of an epic two-day journey taken by a ewe determined to find her lamb and of Queenie, an ageing and neglected horse who comes to live at the farm. Meanwhile, her husband Clive is almost arrested on a midnight stakeout to catch a sheep-worrying dog and becomes the object of affection for a randy young bull.
Amanda will read from her book and will be in conversation.
Tea and cakes available
Friday 10 March
Above Head Height
This book is a a must-have for anyone who has ever played and enjoyed amateur football.
James Brown has been playing football since growing up in Headingley, attending Bennett Road School and playing football in the streets, woods and gardens around Estcourt Avenue.
The sudden death of one of his long-standing team mates made James ponder the unique bond between men who meet each other once a week for years, but don’t know any personal details beyond pitch prowess.
Five-a-Side football is where you play the beautiful game for love, not money. You play it for life and you play it everywhere. Your kit is damp and your legs are a leopard’s back of bruises. Shirts are often tight around the belly, with your hero’s name plastered across your shoulder blades. The showers are too cold in winter and too hot in summer. Your used sports bag stays unpacked in the hall, and your water bottles are under the kitchen sink.
7.30pm New Headingley Club,
St Michael’s Road
James will be in conversation with Dave Simpson from The Guardian.
The post-match warm down takes place in the pub. As does the match analysis. By contrast the warm up is non-existent. Your performance is patchy and maybe not what it used to be.
But we all still think we played great.
Five-a-Side is sporting Karaoke - a time and place to live out our dreams.
This is a book for all of us - school mates, work colleagues, total strangers - bonded by the desire to blast one into the net from two feet away. James Brown invented and edited Loaded magazine, next he edited GQ, then started his own publishing business. At the moment he runs a very successful web publishing magazine (Sabotage Times) and is a frequent contributor to television programmes and the broadsheets. Not to mention having two radio programmes: one on music, one on football.
Wednesday 15 March
A Yorkshire Tragedy: The Rise and Fall of a Sporting Powerhouse
For some people, writes Anthony Clavane, Old Yorkshire “stood for a
pre-80s, prelapsarian idyll; to others an anachronistic, almost vaudevillian version of the class struggle.
The truth is, as always, somewhere in between.”
Coming down on the side of the idyll, he argues that something has been missing from British sport. It has lost its heart and soul - its Yorkshireness - which possibly amounts to the same thing.
A Yorkshire Tragedy is the final part of Anthony Clavane’s triptych that examines belonging, identity and the rise and fall of tightly
1972: Billy Bremner with Leeds United after winning the FA Cup
Anthony Clavane will read from his recently-launched book and will be in conversation with Tony Collins, Professor of Sports History at De Montfort University, whose latest book The Oval World (featured in last year’s LitFest) won the 2016 Aberdare Prize for sports history book of the year.
7.15pm Headingley Library,
If you want to know how it feels to be left behind, if you want to know how it feels to be forgotten, if you want to know how it feels to be heartbroken, then read this book’
Saturday 18 March
Yorkshire Anthology Launch
Anna Chilvers: Tainted Love and East Coast Story
Poetry Book launch
Valley Press launch their long-awaited Yorkshire Anthology, for which poets around the world were asked to write on any subject or topic, while keeping some connection with the county of Yorkshire, perhaps creating the most eclectic book about Yorkshire ever pieced together.
There will be readings from contributors and discussion with the editors, including Jamie McGarry.
Tainted Love and East Coast Story by Anna Chilvers
Anna will be talking about her latest novel Tainted Love and about her work in progress East Coast Story.
Tainted Love (published by Bluemoose Books) is a modern gothic tale of how
old stories can unravel people’s lives. Secrets and stones have settled in Hawden
where everything stays as it is; the past is hidden, or rewritten. Lauren lives with her
dad and Mr Lion after her mother left her when she was three months old. Her
boyfriend Peter is struggling with his identity. When Meg and her son
Richard arrive, both dangerously attractive, and Ali too, angry and on the run from
drug dealers, old stories resurface, creating new tensions. After seventeen years Lauren’s mother comes back into her life and nothing is quite what it seems any more but love however tainted can sometimes heal.
East Coast Story: novel in progress In 657AD St. Etheldreda, a princess of Anglia and Queen of Northumbria, fled from St Abbs in Scotland to Ely Cathedral in Cambridgeshire, a journey of around five hundred miles.
In 2015, funded by the Arts Council, Anna followed in her footsteps and walked the same distance in five stages, as inspirational research for her novel.
Anna is a writer, a poet, a runner, a long distance walker, a mother, a teacher and a reader. Her first novel, Falling Through Clouds, was published by Bluemoose in 2010. She has also published a collection of short stories, Legging It (Pennine Prospects, 2012) and her play, The Room was performed in the Hebden Bridge Arts Festival 2013. She lives in Hebden Bridge with her family and her dog, Bet, and two cats. www.annachilvers.co.uk
7.30pm New Headingley Club, St Michael’s Road
Tuesday 7 March
The Lightless Sky
Partnership event with Leeds Libraries Read Regional
‘To risk my life had to mean something. Otherwise what was it all for?’
Gulwali Passarlay was sent away from Afghanistan at the age of twelve, after his
father was killed in a gun battle with the US army. Smuggled into Iran, Gulwali
embarked on a twelve-month odyssey across Europe, spending time in prisons,
suffering hunger, cruelty, and violence.
Like so many of the migrants we hear about, he endured a terrifying, life-threatening journey on a tiny boat in the Mediterranean, braved the brutality of those who should care for children, and spent a desolate month in the camp at Calais.
Somehow he survived, and made it to Britain, no longer an innocent child but still a young boy alone. Here in Britain he was fostered, went to a good school, worked hard and won a place at a top university.
Gulwali was chosen to carry the Olympic torch in 2012.
He wants to tell his story - to
bring to life the plight of the thousands of men, women
and children who risk their lives to leave behind the troubles of their homelands.
Many die along the way, some are sent back to face imprisonment and possible death,
some survive and make it here, to a country which offers them the chance of a life
of freedom and opportunity.
One boy’s experience is the central story of our times. This memoir celebrates the triumph of courage and determination over adversity.
7.15pm Headingley Library
‘An extraordinary man - achieving against all odds.’ Jon Snow, Channel 4 News