EARLY ticket sales from this year’s Hay Festival indicate that
snobbery has risen by 15 per cent on last year’s showpiece.
Hay-on-Wye has long been home to the wacky and eccentric, and the annual literary festival brings pretentious and self important droves of ‘bookies’ from London to the Borders in a competition to see who can best listen to a guest speaker and then out-bullshit their contemporaries on subjects including politics, the environment, and even the meaning of life.
This year’s line-up boasts the likes of Hollywood stars such as Ralph Fiennes and Rob Lowe, X-Files star Gillian Anderson will be on the lookout for intelligent life forms, while the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, lectures on Shakespeare.
Elsewhere, in one of the many tents erected and kept upright using the considerable amount of hot air floating around the place, Wayne Rooney will discuss aeronautical engineering, whilst chef Jamie Oliver will lead a discussion looking for the secrets behind the KFC Colonel’s blend of 11 herbs and spices.
Since its inception in 1987, when event director Peter Florence invited a ‘few like-minded friends’ to join together for a weekend of literally relaxation, the whole thing has really got out of hand. More than 230,000 tickets are expected to be sold for this year’s event.
Peter Florence said: “It’s an amazing town and people like coming here. There are lots of beautiful places and lots of events that people want to go to, but what makes Hay special is the people of Hay. They know how to party.”
And the townsfolk sure do know how to party – as far away from Hay as possible. Many locals rent out their OWN homes and flee the town before they are sucked in by the all encompassing whirlwind of pompousness.
But there’s nowhere to run now, thanks to Twitter and Sky Arts – they’re all doomed.