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Wednesday May 1, 2013 by Marietjie Snyman

The UK boasts an immense literary heritage and a quick flip through our mental alphabet brings to mind a host of great names: Austen, Bronte, Carroll, Chaucer, Christie, Defoe, Dickens...the list is...really quite literally for once...endless!   

This year we're privileged to be able to properly celebrate this magnificent art form in the shape of the twentieth Swindon Festival of Literature

And what a celebration it should be for those with a passionate love of the written word, and the notion that life is for learning. 

Running from 6 - 18 May, this event really does serve to put Swindon on the cultural map. With great writers, critics and celebrities in abundance, as well as music, kids areas and local brews, there'll be something for everybody to enjoy!

Writers Ben Okri, PD James and AC Grayling will be there as will former spy chief Stella Rimington, while from the world of TV you'll be able to go "live" with Clare Balding, Kate Humble, Esther Rantzen, Nick Ross and Judy Finnigan!

Away from the festival, Swindon is an absolute mecca for rail enthusiasts as its where Isambard Kingdom Brunel housed his works for the Great Western Railway which then spawned today's modern town centre.

Now housed in the restored Grade II railway building in the heart of the former Swindon railway works therfore, is: STEAM - the Museum of the Great Western Railway Pretty much unmissable if you're in town!

Of course, the town is also a great base from which to explore the beautiful county of Wiltshire. Here you can find the iconic Stonehenge and Avebury stone circles, the beautiful nearby city of Salisbury and its cathedral, Longleat House and Safari Park, and the famous Dorset white horses carved into the rolling chalk hillside and last but not least. lovely Lydiard House and Park.

And finally...we come to that other venerable old man of geographical Wiltshire wonderment that is universally known as 'The Magic Roundabout'  This consists of five rather large roundabouts around a central contra-rotational hub. It is the scene of much confusion and Englishness and has become a much loved Swindon institution and we like it!

For more information on what to do and where to stay in Swindon why not check out our City Guide


Posted by Marietjie Snyman

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