HAY Festival organisers have unveiled the full programme for its 37th spring edition, taking place from May 23 to June 2 this year.

Headline names include Gary Lineker, Judi Dench, Hanan Issa, Amor Towles, Jeff Kinney, David Nicholls, Jacqueline Wilson, Marian Keyes, Theresa May, and Bonnie Tyler.

Local resident Charlotte Church, Ex-Spice Girl Geri Halliwell-Horner, singer James Blunt, comedian Lenny Henry, actor Toby Jones, and stand-up comic Nish Kumar are also on the bill.

There will be more than 600 in-person events over 11 days at the festival, with tickets on sale now to Hay Festival members, patrons and benefactors at hayfestival.org/hay-on-wye. General sale begins at noon this Friday, March 15.


The programme sees writers, policy makers, pioneers and innovators take part from around the world, offering big thinking and bold ideas.

Hay Festival Global CEO Julie Finch said: “In a year when more voters than ever in history will head to the polls, as at least 64 countries hold their elections, we present a programme to bring people together, respectfully exploring different perspectives and the power of storytelling to unite us.

“With new venues on our free-to-enter festival site and diverse new projects throughout the programme, this is a festival for everyone. Join us in a world of different ideas.”

Events offer something for all, beginning with the free schools programme, from May 23–24, including a vibrant strand for families throughout.

New projects woven across the festival include ‘The Platform; for new creatives, the daily ‘News Review’, offering analysis of the latest events, the first-ever ‘Hay Festival Sports Day’ and ‘Hay Festival Green’, prompting innovative solutions to the climate crisis.

Late nights at the festival are given over to great music, comedy and entertainment, while a host of free pop-up activities and performances around the site keeps audience entertained between sessions.

County Times:  The iconic Hay Festival comes to Powys for 11 days in May and June. The iconic Hay Festival comes to Powys for 11 days in May and June. (Image: Hay Festival)

Events will take place across eight stages in the redesigned free-to-enter festival site at Dairy Meadows – which also offers a range of spaces for audiences to explore and enjoy, including the bookshop, wild garden, make and take tent, a host of exhibitors and market stalls, cafés and restaurants, and the new family garden where young readers can kick-start their creative journeys; as well as in and around Hay-on-Wye, including performances all week at St Mary’s Church.

And the festival continues online with a selection of sessions streamed live throughout the 2024 event, continuing the festival’s commitment to digital accessibility.

Hay Festival is supported by lead sponsors Baillie Gifford, the Welsh Government, Arts Council England and Arts Council Wales, lead media partner the BBC and digital media partner TikTok.

For full information, head to the festival’s website.