Fringe By The Sea takes place in North Berwick between 6 and 15 August 2021.

Big name guests include comedian, Reginald D Hunter, Scottish Television presenter and cameraman, Gordon Buchanan, former BBC political editor, Brian Taylor, who will be interviewing former LibDem politician, Sir Vince Cable.

Gordon Buchanan will be talking about his 30 years filming wild and wonderful creatures in remote areas of the planet in Animal Families And Me on Saturday 7 August.  Gordon Buchanan has a reputation for relishing dangerous and tough assignments. He has taken part in challenging expeditions and adventures around the globe always with a view to raising awareness of the fragility of the world’s endangered species and habitats. Animal Families and Me promises a unique opportunity to hear personal recollections of Gordon’s globetrotting travels, as he delves into his world of weird, wild and wonderful wildlife all illustrated with his own film footage and photography.

The following day BAFTA nominated international prize-winning writer, Lemn Sissay MBE will perform a special reading of his best selling novel, My Name Is Why.  This book tells his life story: one of neglect and determination, misfortune and hope, cruelty and triumph. Written with all the lyricism and power you would expect from one of the nation’s best-loved poets, the memoir has received rich critical acclaim, with The Guardian branding it “searing and unforgettable”

The first guest on Brian Taylor’s Lunchtime Blether will be former leader of the Liberal DemocratsVince Cable. He cites his achievements as including the world’s first ever Green Investment Bank, support for young people through apprenticeships and the promotion of socially responsible capitalism. Cable also gave Strictly Come Dancing a spin, as a guest dancer in 2010. 

The second Just The Tonic Comedy Club By The Sea presents another stellar line up with the “towering presence” of Reginald D Hunter joined by Paul McCaffrey, Tom Stade and Susie McCabe on Thursday 12 August.

Former editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan and Red magazines and co-founder of The Pool, Sam Baker talks to Jennifer Crichton, editor of The Flock about her book The Shift.  In this book Sam looks at women over forty and in their post-fertility years who are the most underestimated and ignored demographic in society.

Tickets are already selling fast for Lulu, Ed Byrne, Eddi Reader, Basement Jaxx, Janey Godley, Huey Morgan, Peat & Diesel, The Blues Band, Irvine Welsh, Gail Porter and The Poozies as well as many other acts. A number of events are already sold out.

The festival has sponsorship from Glenkinchie Distillery and Johnnie Walker. Further support comes from community partners SSE Renewables, The Lighthouse North Berwick, Mactaggart & Mickel and Marine Hotel & Lawn. Further funding and services from Event Scotland, East Lothian Council and other partners including Scottish Seabird Centre, Shaw Marketing, Signman, Scotland Loves Local, The List, East Lothian Courier, Gilsland Park, Citizen Tickets and McInroy & Wood have also been critical to the festival’s return.

There are new spaces being used in the town with outdoor auditoria enabling social distancing for audiences of up to 2,000 seated and 1,000 standing. These spaces will be mainly sideless marquees and stretch tents. Final plans will depend on the Covid-19 restrictions at the time.