When you walk into a bookshop or a library you know there’s thousands of worlds waiting for you to walk into them, neatly contained within the pages between those front and back covers.  And you also know that, from the most factual to the most fantastical, they all reflect and illustrate our own.

It’s this theme – Our World – that is inspiring this year’s Newark Book Festival.  Running from July 6th to 9th in venues across the town, tickets are on sale now.

“We are delighted to welcome a fabulous range of authors, speakers, musicians, and artists to Newark for 2023,” says artistic director Sara Bullimore.  “This year, we’re exploring the theme, Our World, from nature to gardens, eco-themed activities and shooting off into outer space.”

So where could you let a #NewarkBookFest ticket transport you to?

A world teeming with creatures from naturalist Mark Cocker’s soaring swifts in One Midsummer’s Day to the minibeasts crawling on the ground in The Ugly Bugs Wingding puppet show.

A world abloom with gardener Phil McCann’s guide to RHS Garden Bridgewater.

A world full of awesome architecture as Peter Ross tell the stories of our most beautiful and under-appreciated churches in Steeple Chasing.

A world of connection where creativity across our twinned towns is celebrated thanks to the help of Newark Town Council, The Polish Cultural Institute, London and Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature.

Worlds where you can time travel with author Matson Taylor (All About Evie) to the summer of 1972 and even further back with hair stylist Leslie Cavendish (The Cutting Edge) to the swinging 60s to hang out backstage with The Beatles.

Make sure you stay safe if you head to the mean streets of Vaseem Khan, Tim Glister and Steph Broadribb’s criminal underworlds, take a snorkel with you to dive deep underwater with Under the Bed Theatre’s The Odd Fish and an oxygen tank ready to soar into space with Royal Astronomical Society fellow Emma Chapman or in the StarLincs Planetarium.

And, when you’re back from your astral journey, discover what’s far more close to home in the Literature Village in Newark’s Market Square.

Follow festival mascot Barry the Bookworm’s Eco World Trail and discover further inspiration in the Above our Heads, Below our Feet Exhibition from Newark College students who will be sharing a selection of books that celebrate our natural world.  This exhibition will feature a range of prose, poetry and flash fiction, as well as visual representations of our world.

“The festival will also feature your much-loved favourites including crime fiction, romance, music, panel debates, writing workshops, craft activities, storytelling, street theatre and lots of fun stories for families and young people too. We are excited to launch our Young Ambassadors Programme and continue to work with new partners and venues which we love,” says Sara.

“NBF is part of Newark’s Cultural Consortium and this summer we are working with the ADHD Foundation – The Neurodiversity Charity – Umbrella Project to present a vibrant display of art above our heads, and performances all summer.”

There’s lots of festival roads ready to be taken – which path will your ticket take you down?

For further information visit www.newarkbookfestival.org.uk.  Newark Palace Theatre is acting as the Festival’s box office and can be contacted on 01636 655755.