Record-breaking ticket sales for Cheltenham Lit Fest

The Times Cheltenham Literature Festival is celebrating its largest number of ticket sales since the event began 62 years ago.

The festival sold 125,000 tickets this year, an increase of 10,000 on last year, which was double the amount sold in 2005. Highlights from the 2011 programme included Joanna Lumley, Jarvis Cocker, Carol Ann Duffy, Ed Balls, Jonathan Sacks, A S Byatt, Claire Tomalin, Terry Wogan and Jeffrey Archer.

Sarah Smyth, artistic director of the festival, said: "Our large-scale expansion to a second tented village (this year) gave us greater scope than ever to expand the range of events on offer and the number of writers we can include and we felt that it was a strong and wide-ranging programme. We've had some great feedback from our audiences and our challenge is to create a festival in 2012 to match and exceed this year's success."