Wakefield gets ready for first ever lit festival

International poet and writer Simon Armitage.'w308a236
International poet and writer Simon Armitage.'w308a236

THE city’s first literature festival starts today (Saturday) and families are being encouraged to get involved.

Wakefield Lit Fest, which is being backed by the Express, will see writing, poetry and theatre events take place across the city for nine days.

Festival writer-in-residence James Nash will be holding workshops throughout the event and has picked a few of his personal recommendations.

He said: “The whole Lit Fest is great, but I’m using my privileged position, or poetic licence, to name just a few personal favourites.

“I am looking forward to Sunday, when acclaimed poet and broadcaster Ian McMillan headlines an evening of poetry at The Orangery on Back Lane.

“Joining him on the bill are fellow poets Mike Barlow, Christy Ducker, Yvonne Green, Jane Routh, Jonathan Davidson and Sally Goldsmith; as well as a poetry quiz.”

Mr Nash’s other highlights include city-based writer and broadcast Ian Clayton, who will be at Drury Lane Library on Thursday from 2pm, and Neat’s day of reading, music, poetry and art at Wakefield Labour Club next Saturday.

It will include a reading by former Wakefield MP David Hinchcliffe about rugby league, ukelele music, a folk open mic night, and a chance for residents to share extracts from their favourite books.

Mr Nash will also be creating a Very Big Story by using 140-character tales from city residents, which have been submitted via Twitter through the hash-tag #wakestory or email ann@beam.uk.net.

Festival tickets are available via www.theatreroyalwakefield.co.uk or on 01924 211 311.

The full line up

Saturday, September 22:

11am - Neil White book signing in Waterstones, The Ridings shopping centre.

2pm-5.30pm - Write it, Perform it! workshop, The Orangery, Back Lane.

7.30pm-10pm - Poetry Party,The Orangery, Back Lane.

Sunday, September 23:

2pm-4.30pm - Writing workshops with the Poetry Business, The Orangery, Back Lane.

5pm-8.30pm - Poetry Business readings, The Orangery, Back Lane.

Monday, September 24:

7pm-9pm - For Books’ Sake presents... The Literary Pub Quiz, The Orangery, Back Lane.

Tuesday, September 25:

7.30pm-10pm - We Are Poets film screening and open mic, The Orangery, Back Lane.

Wednesday, September 26:

5pm-9pm - Wakefield Artwalk: Text & The City, Bookswap, The Writing Squad, Cupcakes, The Orangery, Back Lane.

Thursday, September 27:

2pm-5pm - Ian Clayton writing workshop, Wakefield Library, Drury Lane.

7.30pm-9pm - Ian Clayton talk and reading, The Orangery, Back Lane.

Friday, September 28:

8pm - Simon Armitage reading, Westgate Unitarian Chapel, Westgate.

Saturday, September 29:

Noon-late - Neat @ Wakefield Lit Fest, Wakefield Labour Club aka The Red Shed, Vicarage Street.

2pm-3.30pm - World premiere of I Am The Ferryman film screening with live music and poetry, The Orangery, Back Lane.

7.30pm - Write it, Perform it! live promenade performance,The Orangery, Back Lane.

Sunday, September 30:

12.30pm-4.30pm - Reader’s Day, The Orangery, Back Lane.

7.30pm - The Duck Stranglers of Janada by John Godber, The Orangery, Back Lane.