University announced as Festival’s long-term home

The Edinburgh International Book Festival has announced that it will take residence at the University for the foreseeable future.

The international celebration of the written word will be hosted at Edinburgh College of Art in 2022 and 2023, before it moves to the Edinburgh Futures Institute – the site of the former Royal Infirmary – in 2024.

Strong partnership

The new partnership signals that the University’s close links with the festival are set to deepen.

Last year the Book Festival took place in Edinburgh College of Art. This was the first time it had taken place at a new venue since its creation in 1983, where it was previously held in Charlotte Square Gardens.

Creative spaces

Following its success in 2021 at Edinburgh College of Art, this year will see the festival expand, with more capacity and venues for its programme of livestreamed and in-person events.

The Book Festival will take place across the historic College’s theatres, studios and green spaces in the heart of the Old Town.

Iconic landmark

In 2024, the Book Festival will utilise the accessible state-of-the-art exhibition and performance venues, and outdoor spaces at the Edinburgh Futures Institute.

Based on the site of the former Royal Infirmary on Lauriston Place, the Institute’s vision is to ‘bring people and disciplines together to spark the unexpected and make new futures possible.’

The move will also allow the festival to further develop its programme for adults, children, and schools, and offers opportunities to create new experiences for authors and audiences.

New opportunities

We are hugely excited to be returning to the Edinburgh College of Art in August where we can bring back the buzz of Edinburgh’s best festival years. We are thrilled that our new permanent home will be the Edinburgh Futures Institute from 2024. The new site will allow us to continue building back our world-renowned programme, while putting accessibility, sustainability and innovation at the core of what we do with an all-important ‘village green’ outdoor area.

Nick BarleyDirector of Edinburgh International Book Festival

Sharing Ideas

I am delighted that The University is deepening our partnership with The Edinburgh International Book Festival. We will provide world-class venues and our students and staff will be an intrinsic part of the Festival’s programme, sharing and discussing ideas with audiences from Edinburgh and all over the world. 

We look forward to welcoming book festival-goers to Edinburgh College of Art for the next two years. When the Festival then takes residence in the Edinburgh Futures Institute from 2024, it will help realise the inscription etched onto its wall: ‘Patet Omnibus’, which means ‘Open to All’.

Professor Peter MathiesonPrincipal and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Edinburgh

Related links

Edinburgh International Book Festival

Edinburgh College of Art 

Edinburgh Futures Institute 

Festival, Cultural and City Events at the University