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Wonderful programme announced for Waterford Immrama Festival of Travel Writing

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Wonderful programme announced for Waterford Immrama Festival of Travel Writing

Immrama Festival of Travel Writing takes place in Lismore, County Waterford, from June 12-16

The 17th annual Immrama Festival of Travel Writing is set to host some of the world’s top travel writers when it takes place in  Lismore, County Waterford, from June 12-16. 

The festival programme was officially launched by Waterford City and County Mayor Cllr Declan Doocey.

Commenting at the launch, Mayor Doocey said: “There is no better fit for a Travel Writing Festival than the heritage town of Lismore, the home of Dervla Murphy and a destination that has attracted travellers from the world over for centuries.”

The 2019 festival programme includes a keynote address from Coast’s Neil Oliver June 15 at 3pm. Archaeologist, historian, author and broadcaster Neil has travelled and explored every corner of Great Britain, most famously through hosting eight series of the BBC Two programme Coast.

Also set to host a keynote address on June 15 is the first woman and the youngest person to row solo across the Indian Ocean and also the Pacific Ocean from Japan to Alaska British, athlete and adventurer Sarah Dilys Outen. Sarah has traversed oceans alone in tiny rowing boats, spending months in solitude. She has biked continents in extreme seasons, kayaked remote island chains, has written two books (A Dip in the Ocean and Dare to Do) and her film Home of her London2London: Via the World journey releases this year.

Earlier on June 15, one of the founding members of De Dannan, Charlie Piggott, will be discussing music and travel. The always hot ticket event, the literary breakfast on June 16 will be hosted by the multi-award-winning journalist and author Rosita Boland. Rosita is widely travelled and her book of essays will be published by Doubleday this May.

A screening of the documentary Congo - An Irish Affair will open the festival on June 12. The festival also offers an open invitation to the soldiers who were involved in the Siege of Jadotville.

On June 13, author Dr Robyn Rowland will share personal stories, exploring war, change, family and friendship. On June 14, journalist and author Lerato Mogoatlhe will share tales from her book Vagabond.

Other events include a creative writing workshop with Dr Robyn Rowland, a presentation on Regina Maria Roche from Donald Brady plus a family fun afternoon with The Booley House on June 16 at the Millennium Park from 2-5 pm.

The fourth annual Young Travel Writers Competition is open to primary and secondary school students who are now invited to submit entries based on the theme of Letters to Home. Secondary school level students in the form of 500 word short stories and primary school level students (5th and 6th class) in the form of 250-word on a Postcard to Home. Judges for the competition include Stephen Kavanagh (CEO of Aer Lingus), Debbie Byrne (managing director of An Post), Pól O'Conghaile (award-winning travel writer) and Phil Cottier (CEO of The CX Collection). The winner's piece will be published in Aer Lingus' Cara magazine and the prizes include a Chromebook and an Amazon voucher worth €100 for students and a voucher one-night bed and breakfast in Cliff House Hotel for the winning student's teachers. The closing date for competition entries is May 17.

Fringe events include the Molly Keane Creative Writing Award, the launch of the Castle Arts Catalogue, Cotton Library tours at St. Carthradges Cathedral, a farmer’s market in the Castle Avenue and events at Lismore Heritage Centre.

For full details and for festival tickets, see www.lismoreimmrama.com or call 058-53803.