Media Release: Record year for Boswell Book Festival


THIS year’s Boswell Book Festival at Dumfries House, recognised as the world’s only festival of biography and memoir, saw record numbers attend the three-day weekend of events – which ranged from performances by actors Gregor Fisher, Martin Jarvis and comedian Susan Calman and authors BBC’s Philip Mould, Mona Siddiqui, Dumfries land artist, Charles Jencks and founder of Mary’s Meals Magnus Macfarlane-Barrow.

The first ever weekend of children’s events and activities, Bozzy’s Book Bang, held in the Engineering Centre on the Estate, saw families from near and far enjoy top authors and illustrators, such as Nick Sharratt and Vivian French.

The festival’s Schools Day saw nearly 400 pupils invited from local schools enjoy a two-hour visit during which roars of laughter could be heard when they participated in sessions with Kjartan Poskitt, otherwise known as ‘Mr Murderous Maths’.

Director of the festival, Caroline Knox, said: “Now in its sixth year the Festival has surpassed all expectations with record crowds on the Dumfries House estate and sell out talks throughout the weekend.

“Especial thanks must go to Louis MacCallum and his team at Dumfries House and Dr Karen Alexander and the Dumfries House Education Team for Bozzy’s Book Bang.”

The presence of the Royal Drawing School brought a new twist to the festival theme of biography with life drawing classes that drew out the artist in all who attended.

By exploring, examining and relating the human experience, by listening to and learning from people from all walks of life – not just for what they do but for who they really are, the Boswell Book Festival has, yet again resonated most powerfully with its ever increasing audience.

The great biographer and Ayrshireman, James Boswell, would have been delighted.

Funders and sponsors:

The Boswell Book Festival are eternally grateful to all our funders and sponsors without whom this event could not proceed. We thank them for their invaluable support. In particular, we thank Creative Scotland who has kindly supported the festival since 2011.

The festival is supported by the National Lottery through Creative Scotland Open Project Funding.

Aly Barr, head of Literature, Languages and Publishing, said: “The Boswell Book festival is an outstanding hub for books, ideas and the delicate art of bringing literature to life.

“We are delighted to have helped support this year’s success.”


Editors: selection of photographs here (photographer Allan Devlin):

For more information:


T: 01988 700 974

M: 07766 754 877



Background information

The Boswell Trust:

The Boswell Book Festival is an event inaugurated and staged by The Boswell Trust, a charity registered in Scotland that is established for the promotion of heritage, literary arts and education, specifically the restoration of James Boswell’s mausoleum in Auchinleck churchyard and the creation of a visitor attraction in the adjoining Boswell aisle.

The Boswell Book Festival has experienced phenomenal growth and the organisers are keen for this growth to continue. It has now developed well beyond the capacity of its original site of Auchinleck House – owned and managed by the conservation charity, The Landmark Trust – but which will, however, continue to form part of the Festival programme in 2016.

Trustees: James Knox (chair), Peter Kennerley, Margaret Boswell Elliot, Caroline Knox, Gillian Watson and Dr. William Zachs.

About Creative Scotland

Creative Scotland is the public body that supports the arts, screen and creative industries across all parts of Scotland on behalf of everyone who lives, works or visits here. We enable people and organisations to work in and experience the arts, screen and creative industries in Scotland by helping others to develop great ideas and bring them to life. We distribute funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery. For further information about Creative Scotland, please visit Follow us @creativescots and

Festival website:

Facebook and Twitter

MEDIA RELEASE issued by Carol Carr PR. You too can share your stories (aka press or media releases), on Email here for more information.

Check out for your very own media releases feed…

Check out too

To catch up on all the media releases recently posted on to, you need only click the link icon that you see towards the bottom right of our two media release ‘gateway boxes’. 

Link iconIt’s this icon, here. It’s your route straight into the rich archive.

Carol Carr PR contact details…

Contact: Carol Carr
Phone: 07766754877