TV historian David Starkey and Bake-Off star Howard Middleton at literary weekend

Learn fascinating facts from Britain’s greatest historian or uncover the secret of making delicious meals with a favourite from Great British Bake-Off.

How about taking a walk on the wild side or venturing into the world of illicit spirits?

All this and more will be shared in a packed itinerary at Buxton Festival Literary Weekend from November 13-15.

Television historian David Starkey is certain to have strong opinions on the impact of the Magna Carta in its 800th anniversary.

Howard Middleton, a Bake-Off favourite in 2013, will be offering his pearls of wisdom on gluten-free cookery.

If you want to learn more about the English language, check out Gyles Brandreth who will be indulging in a spot of witty Word Play.

Wildlife cameraman John Aitchison will talk about his travels arouind the world to film for television’s Frozen Planet and other natural history series.

Explorations into the rainforest, climbing the hightest volcanoes and inspiring princes and presidents were just some of the achievements of adventurous scientist Alexander von Humbold. Find out more about this scientific pioneer of the 18th Century in a talk by historian Andrea Wulf.

Sicily is the chosen subject of John Julius Norwich who will share facts about the assassinaation of Byzantine emperors, erupting volcanoes and the rise of the Mafia.

Closer to home, poet Simon Armitage will take his audience on an armchair trip of Britain’s south-west coast where he has enjoyed walking tours.

Launching the literary weekend, Ruth Ball, founder of a company dedicated to making handmade liqueurs, presents a delicious history of the secret and often dangerous world of illicit spirits.

As well as events in the Arts Centre, the Old Hall Hotel plays host to a literary lunch, which features a strong Derbyshire flavour with talks from Chatsworth housekeeper Christine Robinson, thriller novelist Sarah Ward who is based in the county and biographer Laura Thompson discussing her insight into the lives of the Mitford sisters.

Tickets for all these events are available on 01298 72190 or online at