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Huddersfield Literature Festival

Huddersfield Literature Festival

I was asked to capture 8 events throughout the 10 day Huddersfield Literature Festival with some key speakers and events taking place. The venues were across Huddersfield city centre from the university through to the Byram Arcade.

The opening night saw Jah Wobble the legendary bass player, singer, songwriter and also a poet being interviewed by music journalist Dave Simpson.


(This image was printed in the local press…)

Another big event that drew the crowds was ‘Manga Con’. All things Manga with people dressed up in various characters. Needless to say the only character I knew was Pikachu and there was a few of them about!


For the first time it has left its home at the Southbank was Polaris, dub Polaris Up North. An evening based in the Byram Arcade and saw both local and traveling poets /authors reflect and recite their work.


As with my documentary photography and indeed anything that I’m capturing on the fly I try to bring the viewer into the image. To let them be apart of the event, to be in the audience… Award winning author Jim Crace was someone I found easy to capture with plenty of expressions, gestures and his engaging spoken word. With a lot of these events it only needed a few images captured to document their involvement in the week. So once I frame up a shot I sit and wait for a good expression or something that almost makes me press the shutter.


Not wanting to use flash I was pleased with this lecture theater and its spot lights…. helped alot.

The next high profile figure was journalist Kate Adie, well known for her war reporting and also for being the BBC’s chief news correspondent. Around 500 came to the stunning Huddersfield town hall to hear her talk about her time as a war correspondent and her latest book ‘Fighting on the Home Front’.

Kate Adie is a Patron of Hearing Link – a UK charity that supports people with hearing loss and their families. Speech to Text/live subtitling for people with hearing loss was used at this event which was great to see it working.



Joanne Harris the international bestselling author of Chocolat and of fantasy novels Runemarks and Runelight spoke about her new epic fantasy novel, The Gospel of Loki. Joanne spoke of her love of reading from an early age and the events that found her developing a passion for Norse Mythology. One particular story was of how she was reunited with a library book she would get from her local Barnsley library when she was a little girl…. great story.


The last event was a performance poetry of Jim Greenhalf’s powerful verse about the 307 soldiers from Britain and its Empire who were shot at dawn for offences against the Military Act put on by students from the university. Also at this event was a giant interactive book, of some 8′ x6′ where images were displayed throughout the performance.


(This was the opening scene of the performance as the audience made their way in.)





Various images were used in local press and various websites.

I liked this job as a lot of the time I was just left to my own devices to capture and document the events as I saw them.