The full programme of over 150 speakers and more than 100 virtual events featuring talks, interviews, comedy, spoken word and 60 hours of on-demand content in The Grief School has been announced and includes: international grief expert David Kessler; palliative care doctors and bestselling authors Rachel Clarke and Kathryn Mannix; the UK’s leading grief expert Julia Samuel MBE and bestselling authors Katherine May (Wintering) and Catherine Mayer (Good Grief: Embracing Life at a time of Death).
Dr Lucy Selman, Founding Director ofGood Grief, from thePalliative and End of Life Research Group at the University of Bristol, said: “This month marks a year since the first national lockdown – a year which has brought with it huge challenges and significant losses.
“Around the world, millions of people are mourning the deaths of loved ones, friends and family members at an extraordinarily difficult time, when social networks and our usual ways of coping have been profoundly disrupted.
“We are holding Good Grief Festival to bring people together for solace and support. We are delighted to partner with Marie Curie to shed light on the many dimensions of grief, and provide time and space to share experiences and remember those who have died.”
The programme will combine practical help and insight alongside a creative line-up of events exploring love and loss, including What Harry Potter Teaches us about Grief, Reflections on Death + Dying, The Power of Rest and Retreat in Difficult Times, Finding Your Grief Tribe, and The Grief Gift: Finding Meaning + Purpose after Loss.
In The Grief School, you will find 60 hours of searchable on-demand content – including talks, webinars and workshops – relating to specific types of grief. Recorded at previous Good Grief events, contributors include Peep Show’s Robert Webb, GriefCast host Cariad Lloyd, Professor Alice Roberts, author Nikesh Shukla and chef and food writer Valentine Warner. This content will be available to watch whenever you like over the festival weekend.
Supported by charity partner Marie Curie, Good Grief Festival is also hosting six free virtual events for the National Day of Reflection – which Marie Curie is spearheading – on Tuesday 23 March. Gideon Coe (BBC Radio 6 Music) will explore the healing power of songs in grief, special guests including Downton Abbey’s Jim Carter will join together for A Moment of Reflection to mark one year since the first lockdown, and Anneka Rice and Dr Rachel Clarke will join a panel of thinkers and creators to consider how we can find hope and meaning beyond COVID-19.
Good Grief has also teamed up with the Loss Foundation to host a special Comedy Roulette night on Saturday 27 March, with a line-up of 11 comedians brought together by Tom Deacon.
It’s free to attend all events over the festival weekend. Recordings will also be available to watch shortly after the festival on The Grief Channel, with closed captioning available. Sign-up to the Grief Channel for just £20 for one year and you will have access to all Good Grief events at your fingertips, just after they happen.
Good Grief online events are all free to attend. To register visit goodgrieffest.com