The festival aims to attract national and international writers and readers and lovers of
literature to gather and enjoy its eclectic programme of readings, workshops
and awards events as well as unique fringe events including exhibitions, music
and drama performances set around the picturesque historic town of Enniscorthy.
Enniscorthy is home to Colm Tóibín, one of Ireland’s most renowned writers. County Wexford’s rich history of other world-renowned writers include John Banville, Eoin Colfer, Anthony Cronin and Billy Roche and recently Carmel Harrington, Shane Dunphy, and Paul O’Brien. Other recent acclaimed writers in Wexford include Caroline Busher, John J. Kelly, Paul O’Reilly, Sheila Forsey, the late Denis Collins and Cat Hogan, of whom many have been Committee members of the Wexford Literary Festival. We are waiting to hear from Poolbeg Press of another Wexfordian’s literary success who had met Paula Campbell in Meet The Publisher in our 2018 Festival!
The Wexford Literary Festival was first founded in 2012 as part of the Strawberry Festival as Words in Wexford. It was so successful a Committee was formed and the Focal Festival, with Focal in Irish meaning “Word”, was established in 2013. In 2012 and 2013, the late Denis Collins worked with us to showcase the first art exhibitions in the renovated Nunnery Chapel that has become The Presentation Centre. The festival was rebranded as the Wexford Literary Festival in 2014. The Festival commenced its literary Awards programme sponsored by Community Development, Wexford County Council, to include the Colm Tóibín International Short Story Award, Anthony Cronin International Poetry Award, Billy Roche International Short Play Award, Eileen Gray Window Display Award and in 2019, the Denis Collins Visual Arts Award and the Cursed Murphy Spoken Word Award.
The festival continues to grow each year with participation of established as well as
emerging writers across many genres who inspire and entertain attendees of all
ages in a casual friendly way.
We look forward to welcoming all to the Wexford Literary Festival!
recognised as a leading international literary festival delivering a unique
bespoke programme of living
authors in the inspiring environment of Enniscorthy, Co Wexford.
Our aims and
objectives are underpinned by values that enable us to make an important and
valued contribution to the promotion of literature within the county, region,
country and beyond internationally.
Ambitious, Quality, Engaging,
Inspiring, Inclusive, collaborative, Supporting and Encouraging, Passionate for
Celebrating Wexford talent, deliver an
international literary arts festival with an emphasis on promoting and awarding
new writers across many genres.
Provide a platform for writers to develop
their skills and career developments through workshops and networking
opportunities and to provide an opportunity for reading enthusiasts to engage
with favourite authors or discover new ones in unique locations around
Enniscorthy Town and Wexford County.
To provide a platform for writers to develop their skills and career developments through workshops and networking opportunities and to provide an opportunity for reading enthusiasts to engage with favourite authors or discover new ones in unique locations around Enniscorthy town and Wexford County.
We were delighted to expand in 2019 to include Wexford Town in the Festival with Wexford Arts Centre’s The Diary Of Maynard Perdu by Billy Roche and the bookstores literature themed window displays.
Always evolving, under the 2020 CoVid-19 pandemic, the Festival has continued to offer literature: internationally, with on-line events.
Our Aims and Objectives
● Produce, present and host a diverse programme of excellent literary events andfringe events at local, national and international level.
a community of literary artists at all stages of their development with a
particular emphasis on supporting emerging writers.
the depth and breadth of the public’s engagement with literature growing participation across new target audiences with emphasis on social inclusion.
greater understanding and appreciation of Wexford Literary Festival and for
Enniscorthy Wexford where the festival is located
Showcase living world-famous Wexfordian writers, nationally and from 2020, internationally via Online platforms.
- We deliver a quality literary programme including awards programmes, readings, workshops, talks and fringe performance and visual arts events.
- We support the development of writers – develop their artistic skills & knowledge and help them in their art form development through recognition in awards programmes or through workshops, talks and networking opportunities in the festival.
- We engage literary followers, book lovers and reading enthusiasts in unique programming ways.
- We contribute to the promotion of reading and writing through programmes with emphasis on social inclusion.
- Contribute to cultural tourism in Enniscorthy and County Wexford through our promotion of Wexford as a literary capital in south east Ireland and through showcasing our living Wexfordian writer