CANCELLED - Sidmouth Literary Festival called off

Sidmouth Literary Festival. Ref shs 15-16SH 9720. Picture: Simon Horn

It's all about the books! Bookkeeping services are being sought by organisers of the Sidmouth Literary Festival - Credit: Archant

Organisers of the Sidmouth Literary Festival have confirmed that this year's event will not take place after taking the 'extraordinarily difficult' decision to call off the event.

The festival had been due to take place on Friday, June 25, and Saturday, June 26. However, the organisers have cancelled the event due to effect the impending rail strikes will have on speakers and attendees.

In a statement, Liz Gordon, festival director, said: "A large number of our speakers were due to travel from London and whilst arrangements to transport them to Sidmouth were attempted, there is no guarantee that the trains will be running as normal when they need to return.

"These circumstances are beyond our control and it was too risky to wait until the last minute to find out whether the strike would go ahead or not.

"As you can imagine, as a Committee, we are devastated at having to cancel this event, particularly because at this stage so much planning had gone into the weekend.

"The decision was not taken lightly. The good news is that the Festival will be rescheduled and we will post details as soon as we can with the new dates.

"We'd like to thank all our ticket holders, speakers, volunteers, Sidmouth Rugby Club, Kennaway House, Royal Glen Hotel & the Royal York Hotel for their understanding and support. "

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Anyone who has brough tickets online will shortly receive an email confirming a full refund. Anyone who purchased their tickets at Winstone's books, should return to the shop and their refund.

Anyone who purchased tickets for the How to Get Published Day and one-to-one feedback session will shortly receive an email and details of a refund.