Penarth Book Festival to host Dr Thomas Asbridge
3:00pm Sunday 28th October 2012 in News
ON SATURDAY, November 3, the Penarth Book Festival will play host to Dr Thomas Asbridge, probably best known nationally as the presenter of BBC Two's landmark series The Crusades broadcast earlier this year.
Based on his book, The Crusades - The War for the Holy Land, Asbridge traced the history of the 200-year war between Christians and Muslims for control of the Holy Land. The series followed the success of his previous documentary The Crusader's Lost Fort, also for BBC2.
"I'm really looking forward to Tom's visit," said Anne Hallett, of the Windsor Bookshop.
"He has appeared in lots of internationally broadcast documentaries, including Channel 4's The Real Da Vinci Code and has worked as a historical consultant for, among others, Ridley Scott. It really should be a fascinating event."
Dr Asbridge, who spent his early years of study at Cardiff University, will be presenting The Crusades at the Lower Penarth Community Hall at 4pm.
And from the crusades of the middle-east, the festival will also take visitors on a trip from South Wales Valleys to Pembrokeshire just before the start of the Second World War.
Rhondda-born Rod Humphries taught in the south Wales valleys for many years but didn't start writing until he retired. He will be at the Lesser Hall, All Saints Church, on Friday, 2 November at 4pm to talk about his book The Last Train to Tenby which tells the tale of the last miners' holiday trip to Tenby as the dark clouds of war loomed over Europe.
The preface for the book is written by Roy Noble, who says: "Rod has entirely captured the essence of the famed Valleys trips".
On Friday, November 2, festival goers will have the chance to hear cultural historian Dai Smith discusses how novelists have portrayed the people and place of South Wales, with Lewis Davies, playwright and novelist. Fiction or History? starts at 7pm at the Lesser Hall.
Catering for everyone, there will be a Poems & Pints night at The Albion pub on Monday, October 29, at 7pm; and the following evening the poetry theme continues with Penarth's own Philip Gross, winner of the coveted T S Eliot prize for poetry in 2009. He will be joined by another highly acclaimed poet Samantha Wynne-Rhydderch, and festival goers will be treated to an evening of poetry and discussion at 7pm at the Lesser Hall, All Saints Church on Tuesday, October 30.
Tickets for all of these events are £4 and profits raised during the week of the festival will be shared between Ty Hafan, the MS Society Cymru, the MND Association and Book Aid International.
Tickets for all the week's events can be purchased through the Windsor Bookshop, or the Ticket Hotline on 07787 848337. For more information visit the website www.penarthbookfestival.org.uk
* IN the build-up to Penarth Book Festival, a children's writing competition attracted more than 150 entries.
A Special Merit award was given to seven-year-old Alfie Mayo, who was six at the time he wrote the story and was too young to officially enter. Read Alfie's story on this week's letters page 17.