Spoken Word



This zone is for spoken word, poetry, performance and talks.

Programme in the Bowling Green Pavilion

Saturday 9 July


12.45pm                      Brian Lewis – introduction

12.50 – 1.10pm            Chris Jones (poetry reading)

Chris JonesChris Jones has lived in Sheffield since 1990. He teaches at Sheffield Hallam University. His publications include Skin (Longbarrow Press, 2015). He will read poems about the city, both town and countryside, and the people who live here.

1.20 – 1.40pm            Shelley Roche-Jacques (poetry reading)
Shelley Roche-jacques
Shelley Roche-Jacques is interested in the dramatic monologue and the performance of dramatic poetry. Her pamphlet
Ripening Dark was published last year, and her first full collection of poetry is due out early 2017 from Eyewear Publishing

Twitter: @RocheJacques

1.50 – 2.20pm            Stan Skinny in Captain ‘the Butcher’ Reality’s poetry corner cage match (poetry performance)

Stan SkinnyStan Skinny retired from the arts at the age of 27 to focus on being normal. He settled down, got a stable job and took up baking, enthused by the popular BBC series Top Gear. However, like his soufflé it all went a bit flat, and he found it impossible to do without burning his fingers. So, 2 years later he’s back offering slices of his strange imagination, rather than his disgusting beetroot artichoke Ferrari brownies, and all the better for it.

2.30 – 2.50pm          Amanda Crawley Jackson  ‘Furnace Park, or curating an abandoned space’ (illustrated talk)

Amanda Crawley JacksonAmanda Crawley Jackson is a senior lecturer in French Studies at the University of Sheffield and Chair of the White Rose College of the Arts and Humanities subject cluster in Creative and Performing Arts. Her research focuses on the ways in which space is represented in literature, art and philosophy from the French-speaking world. She is the director of the Furnace Park project in Shalesmoor.


3pm – 3.20pm            Suzannah Evans (poetry reading)

Suzannah Evans is a poet and creative writing teacher based in Sheffield.Her poetry has been widely published in magazines including Magma, The Rialto, The North, Poetry Review and The London Magazine. Her pamphlet Confusion Species was a winner in the 2011 Poetry Business Book and Pamphlet Competition, and in 2013 she received the Andrew Waterhouse Award from New Writing North.


3.30 – 3.50pm         Karl Hurst Not on the Map: Notes on Landscape and Absence (illustrated talk)

Karl HurstKarl Hurst is a freelance photographer based in Sheffield. He has exhibited and published widely. Current and recent works include Flood Triptych: The Loxley, a boxed edition of images and poems in collaboration with Fay Musselwhite, In Praise of the Ordinary, a series of South Yorkshire landscapes commissioned for the 2016 Ted Hughes festival, a portrait of Ray Hearne for the sleeve of his CD release Umpteen, and Ruskin Re-viewed, a set of prints of Walkley commissioned by the Guild of Saint George for the Millennium Gallery. 

4pm – 4.30pm             Ray Hearne (words & music)

Ray Hearne (by Karl Hurst)Rotherham-based writer-performer of South Yorkshire songs and poems. Works with schools and community groups to make their own poems, performance pieces, songs and anthems. Contributor to ongoing BBC Radio Ballad series. ‘Never leave a single story unsung’ is the challenge. His latest album ‘Umpteen’ is available on the No Masters label.


4.40 – 5.10pm        Stan Skinny in Captain ‘the Butcher’ Reality’s poetry corner cage match
(poetry performance) – Part II – See Sat 1.50pm

5.20 – 5.40pm        River Wolton (poetry reading)

River WoltonRiver Wolton is a former Derbyshire Poet Laureate whose collections, spanning the personal and political, are published by Sheffield publisher Smith/Doorstop. She works extensively as a writer in the community, and one of her first writing residencies was at the Burton Street Project in Hillsborough. Her words are offered with care, and her poems are sometimes funny, sometimes painful, and often both at the same time. Listening to her is a real delight – beautiful and thought-provoking.’ (Verse Matters March 2016)


6pm – 7pm                   Alexy Karenowska (Institute of Physics) What lies beneath (illustrated talk)

downloadThe Institute of Physics looks at how physics is helping to discover our archaeological past and conserve our cultural present. Dr Alexy Karenowska from the University of Oxford describes how she and an army of volunteers are digitally reconstructing historical sites in the Middle East and how we can use this technology to uncover the sites of Hillsborough.

Please consider booking a place for this here


7.30 – 8.40pm        Sieben (music)

Sieben (photo-by-Chris-Saunders)Sieben is the one-man, violin-looping work of Matt Howden. He beats, plucks, tickles and layers voice and violin. MJR Festival in Lithuania recently gave this rather nice description, saying Sieben is “bringing us driving rhythms, vocals as intense visions and charming landscapes, loop by loop building a shining starway over the Abyss, to our dreams.” Under his own name Howden releases instrumental works of varied styles; as 7JK, electronica meets violin and vocals; with rasp, looped cello and violin combine seamlessly, mixing ambience, mood, and just a little drive.




Sunday 10 July


12.40pm                      Brian Lewis – introduction

12.45 – 1.05pm       James Caruth (poetry reading)

James CaruthJames Caruth was born in Belfast but now lives in Sheffield. His first collection A Stone’s Throw (Staple) was published in 2007, followed by a long poem sequence Dark Peak (Longbarrow Press, 2008). He has had two pamphlets published by Smith Doorstop, Marking the Lambs (2012) and The Death of Narrative, winner of the 2014 Poetry Business Competition.

1.15 – 1.35pm          Elizabeth Barrett (poetry reading)

Elizabeth BarrettElizabeth Barrett’s work is widely published in magazines and anthologies. Her most recent collection, A Dart of Green and Blue, includes a series of poems written in the aftermath of her mother’s death while her current and earlier work includes poems which focus on her experience of caring for an autistic son.

Twitter: @ElizBarrettB


1.55 – 2.25pm          Ghosts of the North and Stewart Quayle ‘Rocks and Storms:Voices from Wardsend Cemetery’ (Words, music and projections)

Ghosts of the North and Stewart QuayleGhosts of the North and Stewart Quayle provide the music and voices which bring to life extraordinary tales from Hillsborough’s past. With recollections of the Charge of the Light Brigade, The Great Sheffield Flood, World War One, grave robbing and Yorkshire cricket, Wardsend is just beginning to reveal its secrets.


2.35 – 2.55pm          Rob Hindle (poetry reading)

Rob Hindle (by Emma Bolland)Rob Hindle was born in Rotherham. His poetry collections include Neurosurgery in IraqSome Histories of the Sheffield Flood 1864 (both Templar) and Yoke and Arrows (Smokestack).  His sequence The Purging of Spence Broughton, a Highwayman is published by Longbarrow Press. A further sequence, Flights and Traverses, appears in Longbarrow’s anthology, The Footing. Rob lives in north Sheffield.


3.10 – 3.40pm           Linda Lee Welch & Michael Harding Critters (words and music)

Originally from the USA, Linda Lee Welch came to England in 1976 and has since worked as a writer, musician, community artist and teacher. Her two novels are published by Virago and her poems have appeared in Ambit, Mslexia and The North as well as in many collections. Michael Harding is a composer, producer, and DJ who specialises in collaborations with poets, writers and visual artists. His spoken word projects have included Exploding Poetry, an on-site multi-media installation at Bank Street Arts Centre, and a live interactive poetry performance at the Toulouse Lautrec museum in Albi, France.

Twitter: @CrittersPoetry

3.50 – 4.10pm            Mark Doyle Cuthbert Bank and Parkwood Springs (illustrated talk)

Mark Doyle photoBorn in Sheffield, Mark moved to Nottingham to do street-based youth work. He later returned to Sheffield to study English and work as a community poet. He is now a mentor for young people at a specialist college, and recently cycled from the Arctic Ocean to the Baltic Sea.


4.20 – 4.40pm            Fay Musselwhite (poetry reading)

Fay Musselwhite (by Emma Bolland)Fay Musselwhite lives in Sheffield. She leads workshops and walks focusing on local and working-class history, often featuring the culture and ecology of the Rivelin Valley. Her work includes collaboration with artists in film, sound and other media. Her debut collection Contraflow is out now from Longbarrow Press.


4.50 – 5.20pm             Pete Green (words & music)

Pete Green (1)Pete Green is a Grimsby-raised, Walkley-based poet and musician who writes about coastlines, islands, railways, walking, love, whisky, underachievement, and getting lost. His debut poetry pamphlet Sheffield Almanac is forthcoming from Longbarrow Press. A follow-up to his 2013 solo album The Glass Delusion is released this summer.

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5.30 – 6.20pm               Matthew Clegg with Karl Hurst (poetry reading with recorded sound)

Matthew Clegg (Emma Bolland)Matthew Clegg’s publications include West North East (2013) and The Navigators (2015). He received an Eric Gregory Award in 1997, and was a writer in residence at The Wordsworth Trust from 1999-2001. He currently teaches creative writing at Derby University. His poetry moves between narrative and lyric impulses, and it frequently explores a tension between the poetic and the anti-poetic, or quotidian reality. This performance will focus on two sequences set in Hillsborough: Edgelands and Chinese Lanterns.


7.15 – 7.40pm                 Sally Goldsmith (words and music)

Sally GoldsmithSally loves voices and uses them in her poems and songs. She’s also a historian, naturalist and singer. She was a winner, chosen by Michael Longley, in the Poetry Business Pamphlet Competition, shortlisted in the National Poetry Competition and has two Sony Radio Awards for her work on Radio 4.



8pm – 8.40pm                     Rommi Smith and Jenni Molloy (words and music)

Rommi Smith (photo by Kevin Reynolds)Rommi Smith is a poet and playwright. She has held numerous prestigious international residencies for organisations ranging from the British Council, to the BBC; this includes inaugural writing residencies for Keats House and Parliament. Rommi was Poet in Residence for the Commonwealth Games in Manchester and Poet in Residence for BBC Music Live. She has written for and performed, extensively, on BBC Radio, featuring on programmes such as: From Fact to Fiction, BBC Radio 4’s Afternoon Drama, Poetry Please, Late Junction, The Verb and Woman’s Hour. Recent writing commissions include: the poetic narration for Collective Endeavour, part of the opening ceremony for The Rugby World Cup 2015; a celebration of Billie Holiday for BBC Radio 3 – selected as a pick of the series for Tom Robinson’s programme on BBC 6 Music; and a film-poem commission for The Guild of St George & Ruskin in Sheffield, in celebration of the work of Romantic writer and visionary philanthropist, John Ruskin.


Jenni Molloy photoJenni Molloy is a classically-trained cellist and double bassist. She spent her early jazz training listening to, learning from and playing with acclaimed musicians in South Africa, including guitarist Alvin Dyers and the legendary Western Cape musicians Cliffie and Basil Moses. Her innovative group Bach ReLoaded (JellyMould) has garnered much praise via reviews of the recordings and live gigs/touring/festivals: http://www.bachreloaded.com. Jenni’s latest project with this group is called ‘Trio + plus 1’ with pianist Sean Miller and is full of explorative originals, re-workings of Bach, and new adventures into the music of Wayne Shorter and John Coltrane.


Download the programme here PROGRAMME IMAGE