The Edinburgh International Book Festival has finished its 2015 run on what it declares is “the most successful year in our history,” with “over 800 authors from 55 countries taking part in almost 800 events,” and “around 225,000 visits this August,” as well as a 5 percent increase in book sales “the highest ever sales in the Book Festival’s 32-year history.”
Scotland’s First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, was one of the host of participants. And post the 2014 Scottish independence referendum, “it is an important time for us to look at our relationships with other cultures, languages and countries and we invited an extraordinary range of writers to share this with us,” said Nick Barley, Director of the Book Festival. “We’ve enjoyed a truly brilliant, exuberant and record-breaking Festival this year – our most successful ever with record ticket and book sales.” Aly Barr, Acting Head of Literature at Creative Scotland said: “With an admirable range of guest programmers the Festival offered an escape from reality while at the same time encouraging spirited debate beyond the confines of Charlotte Square Gardens” And many of the events that ran during the Festival are still available online. (The Hay Festival, in comparison, logged 230,000 tickets sold in 2013.)
Sadly, this had to be the one year I couldn’t go. Next time, laddies and lassies, and for auld lang syne meanwhile.