Hay Festival has this week announced the full line-up of writers, thinkers and performers appearing at the larger-than-ever Hay Festival Winter Weekend, which runs in the town from Thursday, November 23 to Sunday, November 26, with tickets on sale from today.

Prize-winning novelists and poets, global policy makers, industry leaders and guardians of the natural world share the stage with stars of theatre, TV and film, sports leaders, children's heroes, acclaimed musicians and much-loved comedians in more than 70 events across four days.

The festival has issued a public call to nominate the Hay Festival Book of the Year 2017 - the one book readers couldn't put down, haven't stopped thinking about or couldn't wait to recommend to friends. Readers who submit choices online will be entered into a special prize draw. For more information visit hayfestival.org/book-of-the-year/

Now in its 18th year, this year sees the Winter Weekend double its seated capacity with the addition of a new venue and events starting a day earlier than in previous years.

Among the many events on the line-up, highlights include music from Mid Wales Opera with the hilarious one-act comedy classic, The Bear, Daniel Martyn Lewis playing Back and Hay Community Choir. Laughs will be delivered courtesy of, among others, Shazia Mirza, and Matt Lucas presents his autobiography Little Me: My Life from A-Z.

Elsewhere, natural wonders will be celebrated as Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris present their collaboration, The Lost Words, Robert Penn spotlights the wonders of our woodlands and the nation's favourite gardener Monty Don talks Down to Earth: Gardening Wisdom.

Global issues are tackled as investigative journalist Oliver Bullough, Nigerian Novelist Chibundu Onuzo and anti-corruption barrister discuss global corruption; history is reimagined as medical historian Lindsey Fitzharris presents her study of Joseph Lister and a turning point in medicine, industry leaders from around the world will converge to share their experience and best-selling writer Isabel Losada explores sexuality with Sensation.

Prize-winning novelists Jeanette Winterson and Matt Haig present their latest works, and Owen King, son of Stephen King, talks about Sleeping Beauties, the novel co-written with his father.

HAYDAYS will offer fun for all the family, and the Parish Hall will be trasnformed into a workshop of wonders with interactive sessions from festive crafts to hula hooping.

And beyond the festival venues, the town square is the location for the turning on of Hay's Christmas lights on November 24, the Hay Food Festival on November 25 and Hay Does Vintage on November 26.

Hay Festival Winter Weekend has been part-funded by the Welsh Government's Tourism Product Innovation fund, which aims to support ideas that will have a greater impact and attract more visitors. For the full programme and to book, visit hayfestival.org or call 01497 822629.