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Diversity and Representation

Diversity and representation is at the heart of everything we do.

Our programme of events includes many performers from traditionally under-represented backgrounds and we proactively engage with those who are disadvantaged by societal or access issues.

Our Diversity and Representation Plan provides a framework for engagement with performers, audiences, volunteers and core team members, and our Steering Committee comprises experienced arts and business people from a wide variety of backgrounds. We actively reach out to and welcome approaches from local communities and organisations.

The Festival was chosen as a finalist at both the Kirklees Diversity, Equality and Innovation Awards 2022 and  the Accessible and Inclusive Tourism category at the Yorkshire Post Tourism Awards 2022.

HLF was the first festival north of Watford to host the award-winning Polari Literary Salon and we are committed to showcasing the work of LGBTQ+ writers and performers.

The Festival actively reaches out to, welcomes approaches from, and works closely with local communities and organisations representing those of diverse cultural heritage. We fully and unequivocally support the Black Lives Matter movement and support calls by the Black Writers’ Guild to address deep-seated inequalities in the publishing and wider book world.

Many of our events are free or low cost, with additional free tickets made available to special groups.

The Festival commissions AccessAble to create Access Guides to key venues, which are added to and updated annually for accuracy. We also offer live subtitling from Stagetext at some of our events, to make them accessible to audiences who are deaf, deafened and hard of hearing.


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