Hugh Bonneville, Dame Sheila Hancock, PJ Harvey Alan Titchmarsh are among the stars set to descend on Bridport in early November.

They will take to the stage as part of this year’s Bridport Literary Festival which runs from Sunday, November 6 to Saturday, November 12.

The festival returns for the 18th year with over 40 events announced thus far to be held at seven venues across the town.

Opening this year's festivities at the Electric Palace is Simon Parker with an illustrated talk of love, loss and new beginnings.

His book ‘Riding Out’ details the inspirational true story of how one battled grief and anxiety, one pedal stroke at a time, on a 3,500-mile adventure around Britain.

Over the course of the travel journalists mammoth cycling adventure he would meet hundreds of resilient Brits and, he said, “even in his gloomiest moments began to see that a chink of light was never too far”.

Sheila Hancock and Hugh Bonneville will both take to the Palace on the opening Sunday to discuss their novels ‘Old Rage’ and ‘Playing Under the Piano’.

Highlights throughout the week include Alan Titchmarsh in conversation with Sally Laverack at The Bull Ballroom on Tuesday, November 8; Melvyn Bragg discussing his childhood and youth growing up above a pub in Wigton, on Friday, November 11; and local legend PJ Harvey in conversation with Greta Stoddard to round out the festival on Saturday, November 12.

A spokesperson for Bridport Literary Festival said: “It's a stellar array of stars, top writers and thinkers. We're so very excited at the programme for our 18th year. Definitely something to celebrate.

Last year was a bumper year for BridLit and we were delighted to see so many of our Friends and Supporters at events that attracted large audiences from all corners of the county and much further afield. This year we are hosting an even larger programme which we hope will appeal to all tastes as well as children and young people.”

To see a full list of guests, events and timings for the 18th Bridport Literary Festival visit