The Hay literature festival has unveiled a digital programme of events featuring guests including Benedict Cumberbatch, Hilary Mantel, Helena Bonham Carter and Stephen Fry.

Organisers had previously announced that the festival, which has been held in Hay-on-Wye, Powys, since 1988, would not be taking place as a live event later this month because of the coronavirus pandemic.

A series of free live broadcasts and interactive Q&As have now been scheduled to take place instead of the physical event in Wales.

Other speakers at the digital festival will include authors Anne Enright, Margaret Atwood and Ingrid Persaud, historian Simon Schama, journalists Afua Hirsch and Jon Sopel and broadcasters Sandi Toksvig and Monty Don.

Actors Jonathan Pryce, Helen McCrory and Vanessa Redgrave will also take part in discussions.

Peter Florence, director of Hay Festival, said the online events will not replicate the experience offered by the live festival.

He added: "When we get an answer to this separation we are going to come back together with joy and great whooping and hollering and delight and be in a room together.

"But until then our green field is this digital version.

"You have to be able to play the hand you are dealt and this hand, at the moment, is challenging but also actually strangely exciting."

In March organisers announced they were launching an emergency fund after the festival was put in financial jeopardy by the cancellation of the live event.

Mr Florence said £98,000 had been donated to the festival by members of the public and £52,000 was raised by people returning refunded ticket fees.

A further £140,000 was donated by private donors and a number of speakers returned their fees.

"We didn't ask them to but they kindly suggested they would," Mr Florence said.

The digital programme of events will take place between May 18 and 31.