Big names on the way to festival

Celebrated theatre critic Michael Billington is among the speakers
Celebrated theatre critic Michael Billington is among the speakers

One of Britain’s most popular historians, a renowned theatre critic and a Great British Bake Off winner are among the speakers at the next 
Warwick Words festival.

Medieval expert Dan Jones will appear at St Mary’s church on Wednesday September 30 at 7.30pm to talk about English society in 1215. It is best known as the year of Magna Carta but was also a time of foreign wars, dramatic sieges, an invasion by a French army and more besides. Audiences will also hear about the daily life of everyday folk at the time.

Mr Jones has written a number of books, including bestsellers in the UK and USA and has made series for Channel 5.

The Guardian critic Michael Billington is widely regarded as one of the most authoritative voices on theatre in the country. He will talk about his provocative new book, The 101 Greatest Plays: From Antiquity to the Present, in which he justifies his choices in extended essays, exploring what makes a great play and whether the definition changes over time. He will be joined in conversation with Professor Mark Evans of Coventry University in the main hall of King’s High School on Sunday October 4 at 4.30pm.

Frances Quinn wowed the judges with her imaginative showstoppers and all-round baking skills to win The Great British Bake Off in 2013. Her new book, Quintessential Baking, is a trove of ideas designed to bring creativity to anyone’s cooking and turn traditional and humble cakes and treats into wondrous and individual creations.

Her talk takes place in the main hall of King’s High School on Sunday October 4 at 7.30pm.

Other guests include Juliet Barker, whose bestselling history book Agincourt is being reissued to mark the 600th anniversary of the battle. She will challenge some of the myths that have grown up around the battle and explore what really happened on that fateful day in her talk, which takes place at the Lord Leycester Hospital on Thursday October 1 and 10.30am.

And Archers fans will be able to learn some gossip about the characters and ask their own questions when scripwriter Mary Cutler appears at the Lord Leycester Hospital on Saturday October 3 at 2pm.

Warwick Words runs from September 30 to October 4. For tickets and information about these and other talks, call 01926 334418.