Inaugural Football writing festival to kick off in May

Inaugural Football writing festival to kick off in May

Jacqui Oatley MBE, Jonathan Wilson, Anna Kessel and Rory Smith are amongst the names taking part in the inaugural London Festival of Football Writing (LFFW) next month.

Taking place at Waterstones Tottenham Court Road from 16th to 20th May, the festival will see five events happen on five consecutive evenings, culiminating the evening before the last round of fixtures in the Premier League season.

LFFW will kick off on Tuesday 16th May with journalists Anna Kessel, Carrie Dunn and sports presenter Jacqui Oatley MBE discussing the rise in professionalism and popularity women's football, and the ingrained sexism holding it back. Wednesday 17th May will see author Anthony Clavane and journalist Rory Smith joined by former journalist Priya Ramesh as they reflect on the sporting decline in Yorkshire as told in Clavane's book A Yorkshire Tragedy (Quercus) and Thursday 18th May will be the launch of Michael Cox's debut book The Mixer (Harper Collins), examining the evolution of football tactics in the 25 years since the Premier League began.

Journalist Jonathan Wilson will be in conversation with Ed Malyon, sports editor at The Independent on Friday 19th May to chart the history of Argentinean football as discussed in Wilson's book Angels with Dirty Faces (Orion). Closing the festival on Saturday 20th May will be journalists Steve Tongue, Philippe Auclair, and broadcaster Mina Rzouki, who discussing the history of football in London and the highs and lows the city's clubs have experienced this season.

Kieran O'Connor, the festival organiser, said: "Football writing has been in such a purple patch these last four or five years, with both indie and mainstream publishers hitting a rich seam of thoughtful and cerebral writing. This curated lineup brings together some established names as well new and emerging talent, and what better to bring these names together than a five-night football writing celebration in London's best bookshop."

Rosie Beaumont-Thomas, events co-ordinator at Waterstones Tottenham Court Road, said: “Bringing the beautiful game to our beautiful Tottenham Court Road bookshop is going to be a great opportunity to celebrate football writing. We can’t wait to kick off the inaugural festival in style!”

Full event details are avilable on the festival's website.