An alien invasion expert will be among the authors headlining the first ever drive-in Appledore Book Festival.

Naturalist and author Dan Eatherley will be at the first ever drive-in Appledore Book Festival talking about his book Britain's Invasive Aliens.Naturalist and author Dan Eatherley will be at the first ever drive-in Appledore Book Festival talking about his book Britain's Invasive Aliens.

The festival begins tomorrow on Thursday, September 17 with a special opening night featuring celebrity chef Ainsley Harriott and runs for five days at its venue of Skern Lodge, Appledore.

Among the headliners will be naturalist, writer, environmental consultant and wildlife film-maker Dan Eatherley, who will be on stage on Sunday, September 20 with Devon ecologist Pete Yeo as Dan talks about his book Britain’s Invasive Aliens.

The remarkable story of how non-native species ‘invaded’ and colonised the British Isles covers everything from rabbits and Japanese knotweed to snowdrops and parrakeets.

The event is thought to be the first-ever drive-in book festival and Dan admitted it was his first book festival apart from Exeter Literary Festival last year.

Author, stunt driver and The Stig, Ben Collins, will be among those appearing at Appledore Book Festival 2020.Author, stunt driver and The Stig, Ben Collins, will be among those appearing at Appledore Book Festival 2020.

He said: “It’s going to feel a bit weird; I don’t really know what to expect. I have the vision of people in America in the 1950s going to drive-in movies, but I am looking forward to it.

“If people like what they are hearing perhaps they can toot their horn or move their wipers so I can get some feedback.”

He will be joining a stellar line-up including farmer, entrepreneur and television presenter Kate Humble; producer, presenter and writer, Richard Osman, Loose Women presenter and former Coronation Street star, Shobna Gulati and author, playwright and former Children’s Laureate, Michael Morpurgo.

Also taking part is international best-selling novelist Adele Parks, award-winning science journalist, Dr Michael Mosley, actor, former MEP, gay rights campaigner and life peer, Lord Michael Cashman, comedian Lucy Porter and comedian and broadcaster, Viv Groskop. There is also a former British Ambassador to the US, Sir Kim Darroch, broadcaster and commentator, Iain Dale, Yorkshire shepherdess, Amanda Owen, international novelist, SJ Waston and, of course, the festival’s very own patron, author and broadcaster, Jeremy Vine.

Writer Michael Morpurgo. Picture: Richard CannonWriter Michael Morpurgo. Picture: Richard Cannon

Appledore Book Festival is working with Waggle Events to deliver the event.

There will be toilets on site and food and drink can be pre-ordered when booking. It is a ticket only event, available at www.appledorebookfestival.co.uk or call the Box Office on 01237 424949.

Invasive Aliens, by Dan Eatherley.Invasive Aliens, by Dan Eatherley.

Comedian Lucy Porter will be at Appledore Book Festival 2020.Comedian Lucy Porter will be at Appledore Book Festival 2020.