Hay Festival 2024: Lineup, tickets, weather, travel and more

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Hay Festival attracts about 300,000 visitors every year

Hay Festival, one of the world’s top literary events, is held every year in the mid Wales town of Hay-on-Wye.

It runs this year from Thursday 23 May to Sunday 2 June, and the line-up includes a variety of speakers and performers – including Geri Halliwell-Horner, Bonnie Tyler, Gary Lineker and Theresa May.

What is Hay Festival?

Hay Festival is an annual arts and literature festival which takes place over the course of 11 days each spring.

Notable writers, musicians, comedians, poets and more come together to host a series of sessions, attracting about 300,000 visitors every year.

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Stormzy appeared at Hay Festival in 2023 where he talked about his publishing imprint, Merky Books

Who are the big names at Hay Festival 2024?

Geri Halliwell-Horner, Bonnie Tyler and Charlotte Church are among a number of stars who will appear this year.

They will be joined by Dame Judi Dench, Gary Lineker and How to Fail’s Elizabeth Day.

Former Prime Minister Theresa May and politician-turned-podcaster Rory Stewart will also be in the Powys town to provide insight and debate on global issues.

Comedians Miriam Margolyes, Stephen Fry and Sir Lenny Henry will also appear, alongside Nobel Prize-winning activist Maria Ressa and National Poet of Wales Hanan Issa.

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Geri Halliwell-Horner joins Hay as an author, having written a series of children’s books

Where is Hay Festival?

The festival takes place on an 11-acre site in Hay-on-Wye, a small town close to the English border.

The town, which has a population of less than 2,000, is on the edge of the Bannau Brycheiniog National Park, or Brecon Beacons.

Hay Festival parking, trains and buses

The festival is situated just off the A483, between Brecon and Hereford.

The nearest train station is in Hereford, 21m (34km) away.

A number of bus services will be running from Hereford station, Worcester station and Hay-on-Wye town centre, taking visitors directly to the festival site for a fee.

For those hoping to drive, the advice is to car share wherever possible. There is a pay and display car park a short walk from the festival site.

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The festival takes place every spring over the course of 11 days

Is Hay Festival free entry?

The festival site is free to enter, but you will need to book individual tickets for any events you’d like to attend.

According to the festival’s website these can be bought online ahead of time, or – depending on availability – purchased at the festival’s box office.

Hay Festival weather forecast

If you’re hoping to leave your wellies at home, be warned.

Although the first few days of the festival are predicted to be dry, Sunday onwards is likely to be unsettled and rainy.

It’s still too soon to predict the weather forecast with any certainty.

But, in a country with an average annual rainfall of 55 inches, waterproofs are never a bad idea…

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