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LOCKDOWN EVENT: New headline acts added to Wolverhampton Literature Festival

LOCKDOWN EVENT: New headline acts added to Wolverhampton Literature Festival

Image: Oliver Halfin

New headline acts have been added to next month’s Wolverhampton Literature Festival line-up! 

The festival returns for its fifth year from Friday 12 to Sunday 14 February, with an online offer celebrating the creative communities of the Black Country and beyond.

The new acts join an array of outstanding performers, speakers, authors and poets already announced for the digital festival including:

Journalist and documentary filmmaker, Jon Ronson, who will be joining the festival from New York and recounting some of his greatest adventures from across his 30 year career; and author and TV star of Coronation Street and Dinnerladies, Shobna Gulati, who will be speaking with award-winning artist Dawinder Bansal to discuss her newly-released book ‘Remember Me’.

Home-grown talent includes Patrick Vernon OBE, who will be sharing a few different approaches and lessons for Wolverhampton on celebrating and recording our collective history; author and columnist, Sathnam Sanghera, who will be discussing his latest Book ‘Empireland: How Imperialism has Shaped Modern Britain’.

New Headliners:

Heavy Metal fans can celebrate the fire and power of Metal God Rob Halford, frontman of the iconic band Judas Priest, as he returns to his Black Country roots to discuss his candid and revealing memoir ‘Confess’. Rob will be charting his journey from a council estate to international musical fame and audiences will be able to hear the tales of unlikely encounters with everybody from Superman, Andy Warhol, Madonna, Jack Nicholson and the Queen.

Author Will Self will be returning to the festival alongside author and Professor in English Literature from the University of Wolverhampton, Sebastian Groes, and Dr Tom Mercer, Lecturer in Psychology, looking at the intricacies of remembering fiction we read in the past and how our perspective changes when we re-read stories. In this event audience members will be invited to take part in an interactive memory experiment. This event is co-organised by BBC Arts and the Groes’ Art and Humanities Research Council-funded research project Novel Perceptions.

Popular comedian and co-host of Radio 4's award winning 'Infinite Monkey Cage' (with Professor Brian Cox)", Robin Ince, will also be joining the line-up along with Wolverhampton’s funny lady Susan Murray to discuss his book ‘I’m A Joke and So Are You’. The two will be highlighting the hilarious and often moving examination of the human condition with fun, laughter and some insight into the audience’s psyche.

Tickets have already sold out for an ‘Evening in with Robert Lloyd’, from the band Nightingales, and Roald Dahl Storytelling: The Enormous Crocodile.

City of Wolverhampton Council Cabinet Member for City Economy, Councillor Stephen Simkins, said: “It is fantastic that the line-up of the festival is being added to and that the festival is attracting talent from around the world from all creative industries.

“There is so much to get involved in and with these new events added I urge everyone to take a look at these exclusive and intimate virtual events.”

The new events sit alongside other festival headliners, which include some of the region’s most nationally-renowned, homegrown talent such as author Sathnam Sanghera, Line of Duty and Bodyguard creator Jed Mercurio and activist Patrick Vernon OBE.

There are also craft-masters from further afield such as journalist and New York resident Jon Ronson and Shobna Gulati, making this year's festival the most ambitious to date.

For more information on the Wolverhampton Literature Festival programme visit

Please be aware events will be delivered according to Government regulations.

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