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Sidetracks And Detours offer


and The Poet In The Rain asks you to


Contemporary poetry is very much alive with many innovative publications every year.

We therefore launch today an occasional series called A PLACE FOR POETRY presented by The Poet In The Rain introducing you to some of the 21st Century’s most exciting UK poets. The Poet In The Rain will deliver poetry news,  preview forthcoming events, interview movers and shakers and music-makers and review the spoken and written word.

This column will regularly introduce not only the poets everyone is talking about but also poetry reading groups and poetry writing groups and the diverse venues in which such groups meet.

We also look at those who facilitate these sessions and who do so much to encourage and promote the importance of poetry on our arts calendars.

h Today, for instance,  we can tell you about Poetry Now! being run by Dr Lucy English (left), Professor of Creative Enterprise at Bath Spa University and Co-director of the Lyra Bristol Festival. The first session was held at The Gloucester Road Bookshop, Bristol, 6.30-7.30 on Thursday 6th October and will now run monthly. And it’s free ! Maximum 20 participants.

If you are interested please contact Lucy English on slamlucy@hotmail.com to book a place,

Dr Lucy English is a Professor of Creative Enterprise and The Spoken Word. She teaches on the undergraduate and Master’s Creative Writing courses. She specioalises in performance/spoken word poetry, live literature and writing for digital platforms

She is also a co-creator of the poetry film organisation Liberated Words, which curates and screens poetry films.

She has a PhD in Digital Writing, where she created the digital poetry film project, The Book of Hours.

She has three novels published by Fourth Estate: Selfish People (1998), Children of Light (1999); and Our Dancing Days (2000).

She is best known as a performance poet, first winning the Bristol Poetry Slam in 1996, then going on to tour worldwide, performing her poetry at many international festivals. Her first poetry collection, Prayer To Imperfection, was published by Burning Eye books in March 2014. Her second collection, also published by Burning Eye Books, The Book Of Hours (2018),  contains the poetry from her digital poetry film project. The Book of Hours was shortlisted for the New Media Writing Prize in 2019. 

She coordinated the International Conference in the writing and practice of performance poetry at Bath Spa University and since then has run the first performance poetry module at a UK university.

In 2006 she was artistic director of Apples and Snakes Poetry Tour, Exposed. The following year, she was a finalist in the first BBC Radio 4 Poetry Slam. In 2010-11 she toured the UK with the acclaimed Arts Council sponsored multi-media poetry show, Flash, and in 2014-2015 toured with Count Me In. She continues to perform and produce spoken word poetry.

She has toured Sri Lanka, India, Thailand and Taiwan with the British Council, running workshops and performances. She has also run workshops for Arvon. As an RLF consultant fellow, Lucy runs training workshops in UK universities.

Lucy has been the co-director of Bristol’s Lyra Poetry Festival since 2019.


Poetry gatherings, though, are held across the UK at less cerebral gatherings, many of them long-established. We will introduce you to Poets On Tap in Rochdale, with its resident ukelele band as well as excellent writers and performance poets like Seamus Kelly and Eileen Earnshaw (right), and we will introduce you to That Poetry  Bloke who often works in their area. He is shown on our cover photograph with Sidetracks And Detour editor, and poet, Norman Warwick

photo mcmillan  We will look at the work of such excellent writer / performers as James Nash and Ian McMillan, Roger McGough, Carol Anne Duffy and Pam Ayres.

The above article first appears in our PASS IT ON weekly walkabout Sunday Supplement in October and if you are a lover of poetry in any form, we are confident this new series of occasional pieces will be of interest to you.

We think our Sunday supplement pages are ideal as A PLACE FOR POETRY, and therefore future articles will appear there, so if are an organiser or member of an English speaking reading or writing poetry group feel free to let us have details of your venue and meeting times and any news, previews, interviews and reviews  you fee lmight be of general interest to our readers.

Submit these as a word document attachment to normanwarwick55@gmail.com

You can include jpeg photographs and fliers and we will try to include those wherever possible.

If you wish to publicise a forthcoming event please let us have information at least fourteen days ahead of the event.

We look forward to hearing from you

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