Midlands Poetry Choice – October 2015

For several years I produced a monthly poetry listing for the Midlands. It started out as a dozen or so events, then ballooned into upwards of two hundred in festival season, all with organisers, venue and admission details, and times, all of which also were subject to change! It became an unmanageable beast, so I let it go.

However I have been flattered by the number of people who still nag at me to resurrect it. So, I have decided to reboot the idea, but this time confining it to events that have caught my eye, instead of trying to offer a comprehensive coverage. This has the benefit of making it shorter, more accurate, and more reflective of the best.
The following offers a guide to what remains of October, and some advance notice of what lies beyond:

Friday 16th October, Christine Whittemore, poet and author, is launching her award-winning, first novel ‘Inscription’ at The Suffolk Anthology, Cheltenham, from 7pm. ‘Inscription’ tells the intertwining stories of two women living two thousand years apart, and it has won the Eludia Award in USA.
It would be helpful for the bookshop to have an idea of numbers, but don’t let that stop you turning up on impulse!

Oct 20th, Ashmole room, Guildhall, Lichfield, 7.45pm Ben Macnair workshop on the poetry of the macabre. Lichfield Poets Meet

Tue 20th Oct, 10.30am-12noon, Staveley Library, Poetry and Song with Sally Goldsmith.Tea and cake. All welcome. FREE event. For more information and to book a place ring Staveley Library on 01246 472448.

Wed 21st Oct, 7.30-8.45pm, Made in Derbyshire: Derbyshire Poets Laureate at Buxton Library. A unique opportunity to hear laureates Helen Mort, Matt Black, River Wolton and Cathy Grindrod reading their poems. This event will include readings from a new posthumous collection of poems by Ann Atkinson, Derbyshire Poet Laureate 2009-11. FREE event. For more information and to book a place ring Buxton Library on 01629 533460.

Thursday 22nd October, Anna Saunders is launching her new collection ‘Kissing the She Bear’ – a new title from Wild Conversations Press. 7pm at Copa, Cheltenham
Entrance to the event is free and all guests will be offered a glass of wine and truffles. The event also includes an open mic section. Please come and share your work inspired by fantasy and myth.

Friday 23rd October, Ross Cogan’s verse play for voices ‘In Agincourt Field’ will be performed at The Playhouse, Cheltenham7.30 pm. tickets £6

Tues Oct 27th Buxton Word Wizard Poetry Slams at The Buckingham Hotel, Buxton, 7:30pm on the last Tuesday of every month. Entry is £2.50. More info – Rob at poetryslamUK@aol.com

Tuesday, October 27, Purple Penumbra,at 7:30pm – 10:30pm,The Barlow Theatre
B69 4 Oldbury, Sandwell, United Kingdom

Wed 29th Oct “42″ Open Mic Night (Gothic, Horror, Sci-Fi & Fantasy) Lunar Bar, New St Worcester, 7.30, Free in:Glen James hosts.last wed monthly E-mail: 42openmicnight@42genrearts.co.​uk


Nov 5th Rosie Shepherd, Shrewsbury. Milk St. 7.30pm

Friday 6 November – 6pm to 8.30pm – attend the festival opening reception to celebrate Templar’s 10th birthday. This will include 2 short readings of new work by Paul Maddern and Jane Weir. There may be an opportunity for a short reading from A Place of Wonder too. (Alison to arrange for stanza name badges and supply Alex with a list of Derbyshire tourism and literature local authority contacts to invite to promote A Place of Wonder to). Let Alison Riley know if you are coming along to this reception.

Saturday 7 November – Meet at 1pm in the Archive Room to finalise the performance and seating arrangements. Our reading is 2pm to 3pm. (Alison to make reserved for reader notices so we can sit together).

Please let Alison know if you are attending this and which poem you are intending to read and how long it takes for you to introduce it and read it out.
Sunday 8 November – We are reading again at 12 noon, in the Archive Room, in a session with poets reading their poems from the festival workshops.

Tue 10 Nov – Writers in the Bath, Sheffield. Readers: Cora Greenhill, Linda Goulden, Barbara Jagger, Alison Riley, Nick Read. The Bath Hotel, 66 Victoria Street, Sheffield S3 7QL. 7.30pm start. £4 on door. Please let Cora Greenhill know if you are attending this cora@thirteenthmoon.co.uk

Derbyshire Stanza 2015/2016 meeting dates (second Sundays):

December 13 Sunday – Holbrook (famous for framed knitting) venue to be confirmed.

January 10, February 14, March 13, April 10, May 8, June 12, July 17 (third Sunday), August 14, September 11, October 9, November ? DPF, December 11.

Wed Nov 4th Spire Writes at the White Swan, Chesterfield First Wednesday of the month, open mic slots, (opposite The Crooked Spire), 7.45pm. For more details visit the Spire Writes Facebook page.

Nov 10th Writers in the Bath, Sheffield Second Tuesday of the month, readers and open mic, The Bath Hotel, 66 Victoria Street, Sheffield S3 7QL. 7.30pm start. £4 on door. cora@thirteenthmoon.co.uk

Wednesday, November 11, Deb Alma Launch,at 7:30pm – 9:30pm,Wenlock Pottery
TF13 6HT, Old Chapel House, Sheinton St, Much Wenlock TF13 6HT Telford,Wenlock Books, Deborah Alma and other poets, will be celebrating the publications of Deb’s 2 new books, with readings from ‘The Emergency Poet, an anti-stress anthology’ and from her own poetry collection ‘True Tales of the Countryside’. At cosy Wenlock Pottery, with its roaring fire and well-stocked bar…

Nov 17th Ashmole room, Guildhall, Lichfield, 7.45pm EXPLORING NEW WORK BROUGHT ALONG BY MEMBERS Lichfield Poets Meet

20th November Burton Spoken Worlds, Old Cottage Tavern, Byrkley St, Burton

Sunday 22nd November from 2-4pm I’ll be hosting an Open Poetry Reading at the new café in Walsall Arboretum. This intended to be the launch of an ongoing programme of such events to happen during 2016. Some of these events will feature Guest and Special Guest readers and some, like this, will be Open Poetry Readings,.

The Open Poetry reading is the chance for anyone who writes poetry to come and share their work with fellow poets and with the public. It will be an informal, friendly affair, with as much emphasis on good conversation and socialising as on the writing. It will be a chance for experienced and less experienced poets to listen to and share each others’ work, ideas, and enthusiasm for poetry. And it will all take place in the up-market, brand-news café in the midst of the beauty that is Walsall Arboretum. The food and drink at the café is quite exceptional too!

The event on 22nd November will start promptly at 2pm, and each poet will have up to a maximum of five minutes reading time. Readings will be in short blocks to allow for plenty conversation, comment and socialising.

As I say, anyone who write poetry is welcome to come along and read. All I ask is that you let me know via this email address if you intend to come, so that I have an idea of numbers.

I do hope that, if you’re free, you’ll be able to come and support this new venture. And please do share this email with other poets that you know and urge them to come too.

Finally, I’ll be in touch fairly soon with news of the first Guest Readers Poetry Event which will be taking place in mid-January.

Thank you and very best wishes


Writer in Residence, Caldmore Community Garden




Dec 1st Poetry Alight, Kings Head, Lichfield , 7.30pm POETRY ALIGHT. GUESTS – NEW STAFFS YOUNG POET LAUREATE + SEAN COLETTI + JO BELL.

This entry was posted in Blog. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s