Tuesday, 5:32pm
24 July 2012

Type Tuesday: Presstival

Preview of a late summer festival for British print and type enthusiasts

We like the sound of ‘Presstival’, otherwise known as the annual open day of the Whittington Press, which takes place on Saturday 1 September this year.The tiny village of Whittington, five miles east of Cheltenham, has been home to John Randle’s family-run press since 1971 and opens its doors and presses to printing and type enthusiasts every summer. This year’s festival ‘line-up’ includes representatives from Typoretum, The Old School Press, Incline Press and Hand & Eye Letterpress.

Limited edition poster for the event.
Top: Whittington’s Heidelberg press ready to print the Presstival poster.

Presstival Poster

The Whittington Press boasts four Monotype composition casters and a Super caster, along with an extensive collection of diecases, and it is known for its signature use of wood engravings and Caslon type.

The press publishes a handful of books annually including its own journal Matrix.

72pt Caslon at Whittington Press.


Presstival visitors can see the presses in action, have a go at printing their own posters using the small Albion and Farley presses, and watch bookbinding, paper-making and marbling demonstrations.

Visitors to last year’s open day. Photo by Karel Prokes.


Starting at 1pm, Presstival coincides with the Whittington Summer Show, so expect a raffle, a dog show and games of skittles alongside the presses.

The neighbouring Elizabethan manor, Whittington Court will also be open to the public. In the evening there is a barbecue, folk music and a field to camp in.

Whittington’s Heidelberg press ready to print the Presstival poster.


Presstival takes place on Saturday 1 September 2012, from 1pm at The Whittington Press, Whittington Court, Whittington, nr Cheltenham Gloucestershire GL54 4HF

Eye is the world’s most beautiful and collectable graphic design journal, published quarterly for professional designers, students and anyone interested in critical, informed writing about graphic design and visual culture. It is available from all good design bookshops and online at the Eye shop, where you can buy subscriptions and single issues. Eye 83 is out now – see Eye Before You Buy for a visual sampler