Last week saw the beginning of the 61st Stratford-upon-Avon Poetry Festival with the Poetry Mass, The Pity of War, the festival stand at the Stratford River Festival and the Young People’s Poetry Reading on 9 July.
We were thrilled to welcome Ali and Sam Troughton, who performed a selection of 54 poems submitted by local school children in the region. Primary school children were given the theme of rivers, canals and boats and secondary school children were asked to write about Thankful Villages (communities where all of the young men sent to war in 1914-1918 came home again).
We received over 250 poems in total and were blown away by the talents of our young neighbours. Thousands of people have seen the poems displayed at the Stratford River Festival and now hanging proudly outside Shakespeare's Birthplace. The Poetry Festival continues this week with performances of works by Seamus Heaney, Dylan Thomas and our poet in residence Jo Bell, who will be leading a vibrant writing workshop on Wednesday 16 July and popping up at various Poetry Festival events over the coming weeks. Take a look at all of the events on offer and buy your tickets before they disappear!