BRIDPORT Literary Festival is in full swing this week, with events still to look forward to including talks this Saturday by Bake Off judge Prue Leith, royal insider Penny Junor and Countdown host Nick Hewer.

Hewer will be talking about his memoir, My Alphabet: A Life from A to Z, a brilliantly amusing and evocative journey through his life.

Born in Wiltshire, he ran a highly successful PR company before being recruited by Sir Alan Sugar as one of his closest advisors to work with him on the TV series, The Apprentice.

He has since hosted the popular Countdown series for Channel 4. With a wry sense of humour and an astute insight, Hewer reveals all, including chapters on Frights, The Queen, Nicotine and Underwear. He’s at the Electric Palace on Saturday, November 10 at 4.30pm.

It’s a star-studded day at the Palace with Penny Junor giving an insight into royal life before handing over to her sister-in-law, Prue Leith, who will be in conversation with Val Hudson. Leith has been at the top of the British food scene for nearly 60 years and excels at everything – teaching, writing, judging and communicating.

In the evening, super sailor Sir Robin Knox-Johnson is in conversation with Paul Heiney. He burst to fame when he became the first man ever to complete a single-handed, non-stop circumnavigation of the world on April 22, 1969. His second solo circumnavigation was in 2007. At the age of 68 he was the oldest person to complete this feat.

Tomorrow (Fri) sees multi-award-winning novelist Mick Herron at Bridport Electric Palace. He’s been described by crime writer Val McDermid as ‘the John le Carre of our generation’ and is the creator of the Jack Lamb series of thrillers.

Also on the bill at the Palace tomorrow is Patrick Gale, whose new novel, Take Nothing With You, explores a collision between childish hero worship and extremely messy adult love lives.

Meanwhile, in the Bull Hotel Ballroom tomorrow, Jonathan Drori gives an illustrated talk, Around The World In 80 Trees, followed by Edward Wilson-Lee and The Catalogue of Shipwrecked Books, the story of Christopher Columbus’s illegitimate son, Hernando, who sought to surpass his father’s achievement by creating a universal library.

Rounding up the 14th Bridport Literary Festival on Sunday November 11 are ex-Stornoway frontman Brian Briggs and poet Paul Henry at Sladers Yard, presenting poems and songs in The Glass Aisle at 12pm. They’ll be joined on some tracks by Stornoway colleague Jon Ouin, whose parents live locally.

The festival ends on Sunday at 3pm at Bridport Electric Palace when Antony Beevor is in conversation about Arnhem with Sir Barney White-Spunner. Beevor is an award-winning military historian. With access to new sources, he has reconstructed the terrible reality of what was known as ‘the last Germany victory’.

Tickets for all these events are £10 (apart from The Glass Aisle) and can be obtained from Bridport Tourist Information Centre in Bucky Doo Square, on 01308 424901. For more information visit