Monthly Archives: April 2014

Wenlock Poetry Festival 2014


Gary has had time to post his review of Wenlock Poetry Festival – and he was lucky enough to manage more of the weekend than me. It is a great write up of many events I missed (due to family wedding party) – I have reblogged it to tickle your tastebuds whilst you wait for my review post. This is a very busy week, hoping to post mine as soon as possible.



This was my third visit to the Wenlock Poetry Festival, and for the first time I stayed overnight locally to maximise my time. As always, a diverse, eclectic programme had been laid down by organiser Anna Dreda such that many are starting to come now not for specific events, but for the festival itself, confident in the event, surely a very good sign, and with good reason. For it is the sort of festival where you can turn up on your own and bump into friends, or simply make them.

Sadly I could not come up for Friday, which ,meant that I missed Luke Wright, and a triple bill of John Hegley, Emma Purshouse and Mia Cunningham all of whom attracted glowing reports upon my arrival on Saturday. Apart from some seasonal April showers on Saturday, the weather was kind, with the Poetree making a welcome return along with a…

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The Poetry Fence


My Acton Scott Farm Poem

The Poetry Fence.


Jean Atkin is currently the Poet is Residence at Acton Scott Farm, she is currently asking for people to send short farm related poems 4- 6 lines and she is attaching them to the POETRY FENCE! I submitted and am delighted to see my work tagged on the fence alongside the other poems. I hope to see a photo of the whole fence at some point!


A Great Day at Wenlock Poetry Festival


I had a superb day – even getting caught in a hailstorm in between venues didn’t spoil my mood. I also bumped into two friends, which was lovely – much as I am used to wandering solo, a festival is a better experience when it is shared!


Wenlock Poetry Festival wenlock

What an amazing Poetry Festival – I thought it had been running a lot longer than 5 years, it is a great event. The Patron is Carol Ann Duffy who thought the town was perfect for a poetry festival – which of course it is!

Check out the website to see the full programme of events HEREWPF Flag
I was unable to make it sooner than Sunday due to a family wedding meal and Word Up. I also don’t have a lot of spare cash at the moment with 2 houses to pay for, so I organised a schedule of free events and set off (a little like Dick Whittington), full of hope and poetry.

The main part of the day for me would be performing at the Open Mic Event hosted by Mark Niel at the George & Dragon pub.

The events were organised in The Edge Arts centre – a short, uphill walk from the town and at various venues in the town, the Priory, Pottery, Holy Trinity Church and several other places. As with all festivals some of the events clashed and that was a tad frustrating, but is always the case. The shuttle bus service (from the arts centre) was good, although a bit sporadic.

I had planned to get there for 10 am – had some trouble with the early morning and my SATNAV not working for part of the journey. I made it in just before 11a.m


I started at the Edge Arts Centre, looking at the Words Exhibition, Symonds was influenced by the Dictionary and created some great black and white photos depicting scenes and life that associated with certain words.

Exhibition: Words of the Century – Jimmy Symonds

I also checked out the book stall and bought this year’s anthology of Wenlock Poetry. A great souvenir. WPF anth

Then I watched Dart (24 minutes)

A short film based on the T.S.Eliot award-winning poem by Alice Oswald.  Over a decade ago, Alice began recording conversations with the people who live and work along the river Dart.  This film combines the words of her subsequent book-length poem with actual observations of life along the Dart. WPF Dart

Then I hot footed into town, on the shuttle bus, went to visit the Craftevan where I bought a small notebook and wished I was rich enough to buy more.

I explored the town a little on my way to the pub for the Open Mic Event, I took photos of some of the poems on the Poetry Trail, explored Wenlock books and then bumped into 2 other poets from Worcestershire Michelle Crosbie and Io Osborn, which was lovely. They were performing at the Open Mic too.

WPF Tish farrell

Copyright Tish Farrell 2014


The George & Dragon was a friendly small pub, very traditional. There was a great turn out for the last of the open mic events hosted and organised by Mark Niel. I read 3 themed poems and was later stopped in the street by a couple who wanted to tell me how much they had enjoyed it. It was a great experience with many performers taking part, some of whom I knew. I was delighted that Anthony Owens also came to take part, it was great hearing him read.

Poems and Pints with Mark Niel – Nature or Place

WPF G G Trish Farrell

Copyright Tish Farrell 2014


From there the 3 of us hot footed uphill as Io had a workshop to attend. Michelle and I had a spot of lunch filled in the survey /evaluation forms. Before heading in for a wander around.

We stayed to watch the film Finished with the War (8 minutes) and then decided to head back into town.    WPF Prog

On our way – we were caught in the biggest hailstorm ever! We got drenched, so our first port of call was to find shelter. (Along with everyone else!)

We took a wander around the town and found Croft Originals – where my poem was displayed on the trail. WPF 002 WPF 001 Thanks to Paul Francis for these photos – I still need to upload mine. I will add to the blog when I have with a link back to this post.

We had another wander around the bookshop

WPF Trish farrell

Copyright Tish Farrell 2014

and then went to see the Guildhall –


(C) Wenlock Studios 2014

(C) Wenlock Studios 2014

not part of the festival venues but an impressive building and it was here that we spotted the Poetree from one of the windows. WPF Poetree

I took lots of photos of the Poetree and left a poem of my own hanging on the blossom branches.

Then we headed back to the Arts Centre to meet up with Io. The girls were going to call it a day after a drop in at the Arts Centre café. I had got tickets to go and watch the Dutch poets and they decided to come with me. Poetry from the Lowlands, featuring three of Holland’s finest writers
It was amazing and a great finish to the day.

After Io and Michelle left, I went to meet Sally Crabtree and I was very excited because I had seen her on television a few years ago. Her sweetshop was not disappointing at all and nor was meeting her, she is lovely.

Sally Crabtree’s ‘Sweetshop of Words’ WPF Paul Francis

Then I headed home full of happiness and poetry. Looking forward to next year already!


A Great Night at Word Up!


I have had an amazing night – now on the post performance adrenalin mixed with sugar rush of waffles from ‘Something Sweet’!

It was an amazing night at Word Up, Ddotti had managed to get a PA system and the mic can really help over the noise of the coffee house/bakery busy times!

Ian Bowkett was brilliant and I loved watching him perform again and have come home with some of his poems to enjoy as soon as I have downloaded them. QCM Ian

All the other performances were a really high standard too and lots of new faces. I managed for the 1st time EVER, to perform a poem from memory and I managed it with a confident performance too!

I was delighted to see Kate Walton (Story Tramp) again, before she goes off to do all the summer festivals, it was a shame she couldn’t perform but the slots were so full, we were bursting at the seams!

After a great few hours it was over, it finishes 9.30 as York’s Bakery shuts, as with last time I made it (back in February I think) a group of us, most of us who performed and some who watch went to the other side of the city to ssSomething Sweet to eat waffles, crepes and sundaes at the 24hour waffle place! It was great fun, despite having to split over 2 tables as there wasn’t a big enough table for us all.

It is a great time to chat – as I have said before, the gigs are great but there is never time to socialise in the interval with everyone and if people all leave at the end of the night there will definitely be a handful of people (at least) who you wanted to speak to and never had the chance.

meword up

I had no idea how late it was – but it was around midnight when I got home!

Buzzing on sugar and adrenaline! inkspill heart

An Exceptionally Busy Week!


I have just looked at my calendar and freaked out a bit!

The next few weeks are extremely busy with going back to work after the Easter break and performing!

I have also got to try and fit some writing in, particularly deadline pieces and poems for NaPoWriMo and 52, as well as the 10,000 words target I have been working towards in rough draft short stories and flashes for Camp NaNoWriMo – which sadly this year, I have barely been in the cabin, on the website or present online or in any reality writing meets at all.


Tonight I am performing at Word Up, tomorrow we have a BIG family meal to celebrate my Uncle’s Wedding which took place in London a fortnight ago.




  • Sunday I am hoping to make it to the Much Wenlock Poetry Festival.


  •  Monday there is a TV script workshop I have been invited to attend – although physically getting a ticket is proving to be a mission!


Tuesday I am back to work. Then I am performing at the following events;


  • Saints and Sinners is Wednesday, run by Pigeon Park Press.


  • Thursday I have Poetry For Lunch – the stanza group are taking over.


  • Friday I have a Stanza meeting.


  • Sunday I have my FIRST EVER Poetry Slam!


  • Monday (fortunately a Bank Holiday) I have Najma Hush’s *PhotoGiraffe final exhibition event, Abstract Elements


  • Wednesday Confab Cabaret


  • Thursday SpeakEasy


  • Friday Poetry & Pollination – Ledbury Poetry Festival & WLF at the Hive  do415com open mic


  • Saturday – Writing West Midlands Assistant Writer Role


Then I am performing Tuesday, possibly Thursday and definitely Friday of the following week!

WHOAHOO! That’s some schedule with work as well!

Power naps start TODAY! ws_Empty_Battery_852x480


An Afternoon of Poetry and Waffles


pfl april 2

PFL Chris PFL Jan PFL me PFL Natalie  PFL4  PFL andrea

Poetry for Lunch today was great and the sun shone – that’s the first time that has ever happened!

‘Wonderful poetry and wonderful poetry this Thursday. Thank you to Swingerella, James Langton, Nina Lewis, Inez MacDonald, Al Barz, Natalie Burdett, Christian Makuta, Maria Isabel and of course a big thank you to Loss the techie.’ – Jan Watts


Next week Worcester Stanza Group (which I am in) is taking over PFL for the whole lunch time! Claire Walker has organised it and I can’t wait. Have even taken the day off work.

A few of us went out afterwards to eat at Something Sweet – an amazing Waffle house on the other side of the city!

ss1   ss  ss2

Since getting home over 6hours later, Mr G has been very productive in the garden, planting asparagus and then we both spent a while up at the allotment, cutting down long grass, weeding and planting potatoes. I will definitely need a lie in tomorrow!


Out again tomorrow night for Word Up at York’s Bakery, I was reciting my lines on the way home trying to learn some of my set. Look out for posts about that tomorrow.

Poetry For Lunch


Off to the city today, to the Library of Birmingham to perform in the amphitheatre with Jan Watts jan watts and many other talented poets.

The weather isn’t looking too glorious for an outdoor gig… but we will bring brightness in our words.

PFL april

St. George’s Day – Have a Happy One!


They even sell St George’s Day cards in the shops now! It isn’t generally celebrated as much as we join in St. Patrick’s Day. With countries so closely connected I think a lot of us have British Heritage rather than 100% English (We have to leave that to cheese and such things)!

Still there are always local places where you can celebrate this special day and raise a toast to the Patron Saint of England.

st george






I guess one of the problems is it isn’t a public holiday – people are at work.

Just as we share St. George as a Patron Saint with other countries, he has to share his special day with some other BIG figures of history.

It is also William Shakespeare’s birthday and World Book Night!



H A P P Y    S T . G E O R G E ‘ S    D A Y !