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Daphne du Maurier
The official Daphne du Maurier website, approved by her Estate

Fowey Festival News ››

A Date for Your Diaries

The Fowey Festival of Arts and Literature 2024 will take place from 10th – 18th May 2024, when we will again all meet up in Fowey for another interesting, entertaining, and fun-packed Festival in beautiful Cornwall.  The sun shone down on us for the whole of this year’s Festival, so let’s look forward to another sunny week in Fowey in 2024.


Friends of the Festival

The programme for the Fowey Festival of Arts and Literature 2024 is due to be launched in mid-March.  If you would like to receive advance notice of events, early access to event booking, and discounts on event tickets, now is the time to become a Friend of the Festival.

There are three levels of membership:

Gold Life - £500.00
Annual Silver - £60.00
Annual Bronze - £30.00

For full details, go to the Fowey Festival website

Becoming a friend of the Festival not only provides you with the benefits mentioned above but also helps support the Festival, for which the trustees and all those involved with producing the Festival are extremely grateful.


Fowey Festival announces the first event taking place during the Festival in May, and it’s For The Many Live

For The Many Life logo

For The Many Live with Iain Dale, Jacqui Smith, and Johnny Mercer takes place on Saturday 18th May, 8pm – 10pm, in Fowey Parish Church, and tickets are available now.

For the Many, with acclaimed political broadcaster Iain Dale and former Home Secretary Jacqui Smith, is a hugely popular podcast which began in 2018 and is now 430 episodes old.  They provide jokey banter and informed speculation about the latest political news. 

For The Many Live speakers images

Iain Dale, Jacqui Smith and Johnny Mercer

With them, for this live edition, will be West Country Conservative MP and Veterans Minister Johnny Mercer.  You can expect political insight and analysis, gossip and humour in this wonderful two-hour show.  There will also be an opportunity for the audience to ask questions.

The Venue bar will be open before the event and during the twenty-minute interval.

To book, please use this link to the Fowey Festival website


Fowey Festival 2024 Short Story Competition for Adults

Fowey Festival Adults Short Story competition large logo

The Fowey Festival adults short story competition has been launched.  Each year, this competition, along with the Young Artists and Writers Competition, forms part of the Fowey Festival of Arts and Literature.  This year, both competitions are sharing the same theme: Beaches.  

Entries must be your own work of no more than 1500 words and must include the title Beaches.  There are so many possibilities, so let your imaginations fly and send in your interpretation of a short story of that name.

The competition is open to all those over 16 years of age, and entry costs £10.00.  The first prize will be £200.00 and the second prize will be £100.00.  All entries must be received by noon on 28th March 2024.  Judging will then take place, and the winners will be announced in time for an awards ceremony at the Fowey Festival.

Please go to this link to find out all you need to know and for entry forms.


Fowey Festival Competition for Young Writers and Artists 2024

Young Writers and Artists competition logo

Fowey Festival Adults Short Story competition small logo

The 2024 Fowey Festival competition for Young Writers and Artists is launched on 15th January, and this year the theme is


Children can produce a piece of fictional or factual writing, poetry or art.  

The competition is open to all children aged 4 – 16 living in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

The closing date will be 6th March 2024.  

Children can enter individually, and all the information you need can be found on the Fowey Festival website  from 15th January.  The information will also be sent to schools via School Communications.  

Prizes and certificates will be awarded in all categories and age groups.

Celebration and awards events will be held in the summer term.


As  2024 begins, the Daphne du Maurier website wishes you all a very Happy New Year and hopes 2024 will be a good year for everyone.

As you will see on our Home Page, there is plenty to celebrate and lots of reading to be done in the coming year, with several du Maurier titles celebrating anniversaries.

Remember to keep an eye on the News Page, our Home Page and the Fowey Festival pages because we will be adding all sorts of articles and interesting snippets as the year goes by.



Fowey Festival 1997

A literary festival has taken place in Fowey for many years, the first being The Daphne du Maurier Festival of Arts and Literature in May 1997.  This was a community initiative which had the full support of the du Maurier Browning family and was timed to celebrate the 90th anniversary of Daphne’s birth. 

From then on it became a tradition that 13th May, Daphne’s birthday, would always be included within the dates of the festival.

That first festival provided the pattern for the future, with du Maurier-related walks, exhibitions, talks, plays and music events.  There was a national one-day conference on the subject of Daphne du Maurier and the Romance of Place, with speakers including Avril Horner, Sue Zlosnik and Helen Taylor. 

This was repeated on a much bigger scale in 2007, to celebrate Daphne du Maurier’s centenary, when a three-day international conference was held and concluded with a visit to Ferryside for all the delegates.

Over the years that followed the Daphne du Maurier Festival of Arts and Literature grew, under the direction of a small team of people from Restormel Borough Council led by Jonathan Aberdeen.  The centrepiece of the festival was a beautiful festival village, built on land belonging to Fowey Community College just beyond Fowey Hall Hotel. 

When the festival in Fowey began it was a rare and special event, which thrived through the good years of the 2000s.  But, as the decade drew to a close, a huge range of literary festivals all over the country gave people a greater choice of venue, and politics and the recession began to play their part in what was to become quite a struggle for survival. 

With the inception of a unitary authority in the county, Cornwall Council could no longer justify supporting the du Maurier Festival in isolation; funding was reduced and shortly after ceased. However a local group of enthusiastic people got together, incorporated themselves into a charity and the Fowey Festival of Words and Music was born. 

The festival became an altogether smaller event, located in various venues around the town, and, despite misgivings from many people, both local and visitors, has proved in the last few years to be very successful and financially sound.

The festival continues to grow in strength and content, under the direction of Brenda Daly and its board of trustees, and is enjoyed by all who come.  


The formula is still one of walks, exhibitions, talks, workshops, plays and music events but also includes an Art Trail, which gives local artists the opportunity to open their homes and studios to show their work.  Another popular addition in the Secret Gardens Programme, through which local people open their gardens to festival goers.  The festival also always makes a point of focusing on events to include children. 

In 2016 the name of the festival was tweaked slightly, to reflect more accurately what the festival does, and became the Fowey Festival of Arts and Literature.  Despite Daphne du Maurier's name no longer being in the festival title she is still a vital part of the proceedings.

We can now confirm that the dates of the next Fowey Festival of Arts and Literature are 10th - 18th May 2024.  We will being you news of what you can look forward to and link you with the festival website, so that you can be completely up to date with all festival news.

Fowey Festival News ››