Highlights from 2014, and 2015 News and Plans

2014: followed on from being Derbyshire Poet Laureate perfectly, with 2 lovely substantial commissions to write poems inspired by the people, history and landscapes of two geographical areas. First was to write about Erewash, including Ilkeston, Long Eaton and 12 or so other parishes, which led to a feast of workshops, research outings, canal visits, adventure theme park exploration, and cafe conversations, and resulted in two exciting shared exhibitions exploring past and present. The second was to write poems for the fabulous First Art project, mapping and reflecting the areas of North Nottinghamshire and North East Derbyshire. This is ongoing work for a project over the next 2-3 years. These areas are adjacent to each other, and so I’m hoping to bring the 30-40 poems together in some way.

2015: so far is mostly a bevy of lovely smaller projects alongside my taking some time out to do some final polishing work on lots of poems that I’ve nearly finished, from the last 5 years, and get them sent off to magazines, and see if there is a pamphlet or book to come out of them maybe.

Two highlights already, from the lovely smaller projects, have been compèring the amazing Poetry By Heart competition at Rugby Library, which inspired a poem (see poetryonloan.org.uk); and in a more ranty vein, my election campaign Vote For Someone, for which I’ve written a poem which Richard Bolam has very kindly made a video of (Facebook page: Vote For Someone/ or Vimeo

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