That’s all folks….. for now anyway

So that’s Portobello Book Festival over for another year. We hope you all enjoyed it as much as we did.

Over the weekend, there were about 1000 people in and out of the library and the Baptist Church Hall, and comments across the board have been very positive indeed.  Our intention is always to try as far as possible to make sure that those who make up the community of Portobello see themselves, their experience and their interests reflected in the programme – to be inclusive and local but never parochial! This year’s festival was perhaps the most diverse to date.  The programme is also designed to bring together a distinctive mix of subjects, writers, commentators and readers creating what we hope is an atmosphere that is convivial and stimulating

The organising team would like to thank:

The talented musicians and writers who took part in our SongBook opening event

All our participating writers for inspiring us

Our fantastic chairs for keeping everything running smoothly

Our soundman Hamish for making sure that everyone could be heard

Jock, our resident joiner!

Blackwell’s Bookshop for providing staff for the weekend and making sure all our authors’ books were available for sale after each event

Portobello Baptist Church for their help and use of the premises

Jon Davey who took some amazing photographs

A special thanks to Paul Hudson and the staff of Portobello Library, a fantastic resource on our doorstep, without whose help and time we would not be able to run our festival

And of course, thanks to everyone who came along to the events and created such a vibrant atmosphere.

The 2018 programme – our 10th festival! – will be launched early September with tickets available shortly afterwards. The organising team will be starting to plan for this very soon. Any ideas and suggestions will be warmly welcomed.

The 2018 Portobello Book Festival will run from 5th-7th October.



Two weeks to go – ticket update


With only two weeks to go before Portobello Book Festival begins, below is a ticket update.

The following events are fully booked but a limited number of tickets may be available immediately before the event:


Portobello Reporter

Song Books – opening evening event

Lost Edinburgh

My Way: A Muslim Woman’s Journey

Scotland and Slavery


Very limited tickets are still available for the following events:


Writing workshop – writing from nature

Writers in residence – what they do and what they learn

Outside In

Fake News


Tickets for all other events are going well so don’t leave it too late to collect yours from Portobello Library at Rosefield Avenue. Remember all tickets are free!

Library Opening Hours

Monday 10am – 8pm
Tuesday 10am – 8pm
Wednesday 10am – 8pm
Thursday 10am – 5pm
Friday 10am – 5pm
Saturday 10am – 5pm
Sunday closed


My Way: A Muslim Woman’s Journey

Saturday 7th October, 2.30-3.30pm, Portobello Baptist Church Hall

  My Way: A Muslim Woman's Journey by [Siddiqui, Mona]

Mona Siddiqui OBE is one of the UK’s leading commentators on religious affairs.  Professor of Islamic and Interreligious Studies at the University of Edinburgh, she has written many books, including Christians, Muslims and Jews and The Good Muslim.  In this session she discusses her personal journey of faith with Helen Alexander, Assistant Minister at St Giles’ Cathedral.

Tickets for all Portobello Book Festival events are free and can be picked up from Portobello Library in Rosefield Avenue.

Portobello Reporter event – Friday afternoon

Friday 6th October,  12-1.30pm, Library Upstairs

Our first event features authors Archie Foley and Peter E Ross introducing a selection of  personal stories and reminiscences from their new book  Footprints in the Sand – local history from the Portobello Reporter. 

The accounts of events, places and individuals reveal Portobello not just as a holiday resort but also as a community where people lived and worked. Readings by Archie and Margaret Munro.

Local transport can be provided for those who need it. Contact Portobello Library for information.

Tickets for all Portobello Book Festival events are free and can be picked up from Portobello Library in Rosefield Avenue.