Broadcaster and writer Joan Bakewell and novelist and biographer Margaret Drabble will be talking to John Preston, author of A Very English Scandal, about his work at a special fundraising event at the Regal Theatre on Saturday April 30 at 7.30pm.
Entitled Maverick Men and Criminal Deeds, the event also features archive footage of the Jeremy Thorpe affair, some of which was shot locally in Minehead and Dunster, and is jointly organised the Regal Theatre and Minehead Literary Festival to raise funds for the theatre’s post-Covid recovery.
The Jeremy Thorpe affair was the subject of John Preston’s first non-fiction book A Very English Scandal, which was published to great acclaim in 2016 and later adapted for TV in the BAFTA-winning BBC drama series starring Hugh Grant and Ben Wishaw.
Scandal is also at the centre of Preston’s biography of press baron Robert Maxwell Fall: The Mystery of Robert Maxwell which was published in 2020 and won last year’s Costa Book Award for biographies. Most recently, he has written a three-part drama series for ITV Stonehouse, starring Matthew Macfadyen and Keeley Hawes, about the one-time Labour MP John Stonehouse who faked his own suicide in 1974.
All of which promises to stimulate some lively discussion and provide three of the country’s finest writers and thinkers with plenty to get their teeth into.
All tickets cost £10.00 and may be booked in advance online and at the Regal box office (Tel 01643 706430) between 9.30am and 12.00pm or by telephone only from 1.30pm to 4pm, Monday to Saturday.
The Regal bar will be open for refreshments from 7pm. Some Covid restrictions remain in place to ensure that audiences and volunteers are protected. Everyone will respectfully be asked to use the hand sanitiser provided and wear a face mask at all times, except when eating or drinking.