Lifeline Brisbane Bookfest - It's Back

May 31, 2021
  • A Brisbane institution, Bookfest has been taking place since 1986
  • 26 semi-trailer loads of books to choose from (900 crates)
  • Cashless to be COVID safe

Brisbane’s most loved event, Lifeline Bookfest, is coming back.

Having been a staple in Brisbane since 1986, it was forced to take a break due to COVID in 2020, but booklovers can rejoice as Lifeline Bookfest will return to the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre on the 26th of June.

Spanning over nine days, there will be over four kilometres of books available to choose from each day when the event makes its triumphant return.

Lifeline Retail General Manager Jamie Mackay, said it was good to be coming back.

“Not only are we thrilled to be bringing back Bookfest so everyone can refresh and restock their bookshelves, it also means much-needed funds can be raised for Lifeline,” Mr Mackay said.

“Bookfest is our biggest fundraising event of the year with profits made going to directly support the critical work of our 24/7 crisis support line. Unfortunately, due to COVID we’ve been unable to hold the event and we’ve missed two fundraising opportunities. So we’re looking forward to this one being a massive success,” he said.

As with all events there are some changes for people to expect including it being totally cashless.

Mr Mackay explained Lifeline had worked closely with Queensland Health and the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre to implement measures ensuring COVID safety requirements.

“It’s going to be more spread out over three halls, giving people more space to move around, and it will be completely cashless, with EFTPOS terminals at each register. And there will be no wrapping of books this year, and so when you come, don’t forget to bring your own bags,” Mr Mackay said.

The Brisbane Bookfest has continued to grow since its inception in 1986, when it was originally held at the Lifeline Warehouse at Bowen Hills, and books were displayed on hay bales.

It moved to the Brisbane Exhibition and Convention Centre in 1997, and the now bi-annual event continues to draw large crowds of booklovers who immerse themselves in a world of books featuring a massive range of categories including; Children's; Australiana; History; Reference; Humour and Oddities; Biography; Literature and Classics; Textbooks; Travel; Health; Science Fiction; Fiction; Art and Music; Fiction; Cooking; Computers; Religion; Foreign Language; Vehicles and War Craft; Hobbies; Sport; Gardening; Animals; Economics; Sociology; Philosophy; and Science.

Also available are DVDs, CDs, games, and puzzles.

“We know there will be lots of customers very keen to come along, and we can’t wait to welcome them, but we do suggest planning your visit,” Mr Mackay stated.

“Typically, peak periods are on the first day and Saturday and Sundays, but if you can aim to come outside these times, you’ll have an excellent opportunity to browse the impressive collection.

“We have 18-months’ worth of books stored up; we have plenty, you won’t miss out!” he said.

Get involved! Bookfest is made possible due the wonderful 700 volunteers who bring it to life. To volunteer and be involved in this iconic and much-loved event, head to Lifeline Bookfest's Facebook page for more information.

Bookfest details

Dates: 26th June-4th July
Saturday 26th June 7.30am to 6 pm
Sunday 27th June to Thursday 1st July 8.30am to 6 pm
Friday 2rd July 8.30am to 9 pm
Saturday 3rd & Sunday 4th July 8.30 am to 6 pm

Where: Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre, Merivale & Glenelg Streets, South Brisbane

Getting there:

Disability access: