UWS Honorary Doctor Kirsty Wark @BookPaisley 2020

Renowned journalist and author Kirsty Wark was the guest speaker at the latest University of the West of Scotland (UWS) Inspiring Women event which was held as part of Paisley’s inaugural Book Festival.

Over 150 people attended the sold out event, keen to hear the UWS Honorary Doctor and broadcaster turned best-selling author in conversation with award-winning journalist Ruth Wishart, discussing Kirsty’s new novel, the House at the Loch, as well as her impressive career spanning more than 25 years.

The event was held at UWS’ Students’ Union on Saturday 22nd February

The Inspiring Women Lecture Series of which this was one, was created seven years ago to create a platform for women to share their experiences and inspire attendees to be bold, ambitious and break boundaries. Previous speakers have included Dr Rebekah Widdowfield, CEO of the Royal Society of Edinburgh, and Dee Bradbury, first female President of Scottish Rugby. Over the past two years alone, UWS has welcomed to its Campuses more than 1,300 delegates to participate in the Inspiring Women programme.  Its inclusion within the Book Festival marks the first time the programme has been hosted as part of an external event.

Kirsty Wark said: “I am delighted to be part of the inaugural Paisley Book Festival. There is much to celebrate in the town, not least its creativity and its ambitious plans for the future”

Professor Craig Mahoney, Principal and Vice Chancellor of UWS, said: “In the seven years it has been running, the Inspiring Women programme has welcomed a diverse range of speakers with really compelling stories to tell, and I am delighted it has been incorporated into the first Paisley Book Festival. As an author and journalist, Kirsty Wark’s impressive career is sure to have inspired our attendees. She has been a part of some of the most important moments in recent Scottish history, and I am sure her conversation with the incomparable Ruth Wishart will be a real highlight of this year’s exciting festival programme.”

Jess Orr, Co-producer of Paisley Book Festival added: 

“To have Kirsty Wark on the bill for the inaugural Paisley Book Festival is hugely exciting for us, given her success not only as a creative writer, but also her diverse experience working in journalism and broadcasting. We hope her insights into a sector which can be ruthless – especially for women – will form an invaluable part of a festival with radical and rebellious themes at its core. We are delighted to be partnering with UWS and the Inspiring Women series to stage this unmissable conversation.”

More information about the Inspiring Women programme can be found at