Wigtown Book Festival launch youth spin-off

The Wigtown: The Festival image being used to promote the initiative
The Wigtown: The Festival image being used to promote the initiative

WIGTOWN Book Festival have launched Wigtown: The Festival - a brand new strand to the main event, for young people and by young people. 

WTF12 will be piloted as part of this year’s festival, which takes place from 28 September to 7 October. 

The Festival has acknowledged a gap in its audience with very few visitors in the 14-25 age group. 

With the help of 14 enthusiastic and dedicated Project Officers from Douglas Ewart High School, the Festival Company have set out to change this by introducing a specially arranged series of events, exclusively for them.

Zoe Bestel, 14, Social Media and Marketing Officer said: “By inviting young people to take charge of the project, we have the responsibility of suggesting authors and events, sending invitations, programming our own festival and making sure that everything from author accommodation and travel, to venues, seating, sound and lighting are sorted out.” 

At the same time the team are creating a unique arts festival and cultural experience for people their own age, and have the chance to develop new skills and earn a greater understanding of arts and events management.

In just three weeks the team have launched their own website at www.wigtownthefestival.co.uk alongside various social networking sites. They invite you to follow them @WigtownTheFest on Twitter and to ‘like’ their initiative at facebook.com/wigtownthefestival, where they will be keeping everyone up to date with their progress.

Anne Barclay, Festival Manager at Wigtown Book Festival said: “The team of young people have come forward of their own accord and their ideas and enthusiasm are flowing fast. They have a great energy and it’s a real pleasure to be working alongside them to create something so positive.”

To help the new project to move forward, WTF12 have this week unveiled their initiative to AngelShares – an online fundraising platform for arts and cultural organisations. AngelShares allows donors to make a contribution to worthy arts projects to help them to achieve their aims.

Katriona Holmes, Arts and Business Scotland said, “AngelShares is the latest way to raise money for creative projects online.

Supporters can really get involved and offer their support on a variety of different levels to help make the project happen, at the same time receiving great benefits such as an invite to the Wigtown Book Festival launch party.”