JOHN Le Carré and Martin Amis will head an impressive line-up of hundreds of writers appearing at The Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival.

This year’s festival will run from March 20 to March 28 at Christ Church.

Le Carré will give a lecture in the Sheldonian Theatre and will accept The Sunday Times Award for Literary Excellence.

The festival will also see Oxford novelist Philip Pullman, always one of the event’s biggest draws, talking in public for the first time about his controversial new novel The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ.

For the first time, Corpus Christi College will become part of the festival site, hosting the opening dinner in the historic college hall, with documentary maker Michael Cockerell the guest speaker.

Other big names who will be taking part in the festival include the Man Booker Prize winner Hilary Mantel, the Booker-winning novelist A.S. Byatt, Antony Beevor, who will be talking about his history of the D-Day Landings, and Ian McEwan and Craig Raine, who will be discussing each other’s new novels.

Other highlights will be Robert Harris talking about the filming of his thriller, The Ghost, ahead of a screening of the Roman Polanski-directed film.

Joanna Harris, the author of Chocolat, will launch her first thriller Blue Eyed Boy at an event on March 28.

The Oxford Times will again be a sponsor of the festival.

To see the festival programme or book online, visit or telephone 0870 3431001.