Worcestershire LitFest & Fringe 2018 Book Your Tickets NOW!

We are just 4 days away from the Launch of WLF 2018 and this year there is a great programme of events, tickets can be booked online and I urge you to attend as many events as you can, fill your boots with words!


This is the 8th Year for the team and a decision was made to reduce the number of festival events on offer. Now, for many festivals this would be bad news but the quality of these evening events (note: new DAYTIME slot for the Launch) mean that there is still something for everyone and plenty on offer.

It also means the WLF Team and Festival Volunteers will not suffer burn out after hosting a packed week of events. It is only fair they get to enjoy the festival too. 

Sunday 10th 


Monday 11th 

w circle.jpg

After the wild success of this event in our 2017 festival we
have asked members of Worcester Writers’ Circle to regale us
with a second round of tales – and they have humbly agreed!

Since being founded in 1941 The Worcester Writers’ Circle has run uninterrupted to date, providing a home for some of the county’s finest literary talent. 

The circle meets on a twice-monthly basis to share and critique their various works-in-progress, and they welcome membership from new and developing writers to established and well-known names, too. 

If you want a good taste of what Worcester Writers’ Circle has to offer – and perhaps even look into joining – then do please pop along to this event for an evening of laughter, entertainment, and enlightenment (of sorts).


This was a packed event last year, you will not be disappointed!

Tuesday 12th 


Featuring the Museum’s Poet-in-Residence Suz Winspear and friends, including the former Worcestershire Young Poet Laureate Chloe Clarke, Worcestershire’s current Young Poet Laureate Rachael Evans and the Worcestershire Poet Laureate Nina Lewis. 

There is also a chance to have a private view of the newly-refurbished galleries of the Museum of Royal Worcester and to enjoy an evening of poetry.

A plethora of poets, including Worcestershire Poets Laureate and Young Poets Laureate past and present, will be performing their work, and Suz will showcase her new poetry inspired by a year’s work in the museum’s archives, discovering its remarkable collection of rare nineteenth century Japanese books, illustrations and photographs.


Wednesday 13th June


The 42 Festival Special might well see writers and poets performing their work on historically gothic, dark and sci-fi inspired themes, or maybe not, come along and find out…

The one definite thing we can say is that the mighty duo who are 
The Antipoet , (Paul Eccentric and Ian Newman), will be our featured performers again on the evening!

Enormously successful over the past seven years, they now run their own nights in both London and the Home Counties. They have tirelessly toured the poetry, comedy and music circuits, and have appeared at countless festivals including, Glastonbury, Edinburgh, Brighton, Ledbury, and many others. They have also performed at magazine launches, Christmas light switch-ons, street parties, several libraries and schools, a shop window, the back of a lorry, on various boats, in the minstrel gallery of the Liverpool Town Hall and at Silverstone for the Grand Prix. 

If you fancy being part of the crazy, come and join us at the 42 Festival Special for a little madness and a lot of exuberance. A beat poetry duo that cover all subjects, taboo or otherwise, from thought provoking, through satirical, political and laugh out loud funny. 

Disappointment guaranteed all for the bargain price of £5!


Drummonds has had a wonderful refurb – come and see for yourselves!


Thursday 14th June


SpeakEasy is the Worcestershire LitFest and Fringe’s monthly spoken word and poetry event.

On the second Thursday of every month Worcester LitFest and friends meet and share their words in a safe and supportive environment, providing a home for poetry, prose and anything that fits somewhere in between. 

For this festival special we are bringing a musical element to the blessed event with the wondrous DUB THIEVES taking to our stage for the very first time, which we are tremendously excited about. Here’s the skinny on them:

They were formed by Phil Linnell and Rachel Poloni originally of the Allstars Dub Band. Phil’s background sound mixing live bands and the influence of Lee Perry and Adrian Sherwood gives the band their vintage reggae and ska sound. Phil is the bands guitarist and lead vocalist and a live set incorporates his live mixing techniques.

Rachel on keyboards, features hammond sound as well as melodica and backing vocals. The use of vintage british valve amplifiers for both guitar and keys adds to the bands distinctive sound.

Phil has played in many different bands and genres and after moving to Malvern in 2003 started playing reggae with a local bass player Steve Price. Rachel joined on keys shortly after followed by Sax player Aytch and later Martin Parry of Fine Young Cannibals on drums replaced original drummer Jake Poloni. After the Allstars disbanded a few years ago several lineups evolved under the name of Dub Thieves for the occasional gig, however the band now regularly incorporate Craig Davies on drums, Muff Evans on bass and Nikki Innes backing vocals. 

We hope that many of you can share in this festival special and, if you’re feeling particularly creative, then perhaps you can even share a few of your own words with us as well.

Open mic slots of three and six minutes are available to pre-book by contacting Festival Director and SpeakEasy host Charley Barnes (charley@worcslitfest.co.uk) but do get your queries in quick as slots for this one are likely to fill up fast.

Tickets available on the door on the evening or pre-booked.


As the outgoing Laureate I have a Guest Spot at this event and will be sharing some of my WPL poetry.

Friday 15th June 


Back again by popular demand, the Worcestershire LitFest & Fringe presents a mind bending general knowledge quiz with a literary edge!

This laid back event includes pizza and a welcome drink in the £10 ticket price, but feel free to bring your own refreshments for the rest of the evening.

Always popular this event, please book early…

Questions on current affairs, sport, music, TV & Film (and of course literature) means that this quiz has something for everyone, perfect for those in-quiz-ative folks keen to share pointless trivia!

Maximum team sizes of 4-5 and feel free to bring your own refreshments. 
Free parking is available on site


Saturday 16th June 


Join us for the finale of the Festival and your chance to become a champion! Plus the announcement of the winners of out Big Fat Raffle (tickets to be sold at each event). 

To celebrate the closing of the Festival we will be holding our annual Flash Fiction and Poetry Slams at Drummonds Bar in Worcester. 

If you would like to take part then all you need to do is prepare 3 short stories of no more than 300 words (1 for each potential round). Each round will be judged by the audience and the winners move on to the next.. simple! 

The second half of the event will be the legendary Poet Slam! Again all you need to do is prepare 3 short poems, which take no more than 2 minutes each to read. Winners of each round will progress to the next and at the end we will crown the 7th Worcestershire Poetry Slam Champion! 

If you would like to take part or have any questions contact us through the Worcestershire LitFest & Fringe Facebook page or sign up on the night.


Weorgoran Pavilion Festival: Sat 16 June

And if that wasn’t enough, this year The Ring have teamed up with WLF to bring a little poetry to Worcester. I will be performing on Saturday 16th June. 

Award-winning art, architecture and design studio NEON has created an amazing stage, especially for Worcester. It’s part of The Ring, a Canal & River Trust ‘Arts on the Waterways’ project celebrating a 21-mile circle of natural and historic waterways in Worcestershire. The Weorgoran Pavilion takes its inspiration, and its name, from the Saxon origins of the name Worcester and its translation, “the people of the winding river”. It’s the venue for a free family-friendly festival featuring a soundscape by acclaimed Ledbury born musician Dave Crowe, which plays at selected times.
Bring something to sit on, indulge in a tasty treat from local sellers and enjoy yourself!
Check our other events for the programme on each day of the festival.

On DAY 2 of The Ring’s Weorgoran Pavilion Festival:

Listen to Dave Crowe’s soundscape, Shire Skies each day at these times: 11:00, 13:00, 17:00 & 21:05.

12:00-13:00 Litfest Takeover featuring Nina Lewis & the newly crowned Worcester Laureate

15:00-16:15 RSVP Bhangra – bhangra workshop and performance

18:30-17:30 Hotsteppas

20:00-21:00 Matuki

12:00 Litfest Takeover
We’re delighted to welcome The LitFest & Fringe to our Weorgoran Pavilion festival: their performances will feature featuring Nina Lewis & the newly crowned Worcester Laureate!

15:00-16:15 RSVP Bhangra
Bhangra workshop and performance
Book a free ticket here: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-weorgoran-pavilion-rsvp-bhangra-workshop-tickets-44648999359
RSVP Bhangra has developed a unique dance workshop, which incorporates an engaging and balanced mixture of gentle instruction and good fun that encourages people of all ages, and from all cultures and backgrounds, to participate in Bhangra dancing. Dildar and Judge explain the origins of Bhangra dance and take the crowd through a number of typical Bhangra dance steps.
RSVP also offers dhol drumming workshops. Master dhol-player Jeevan presents an interactive session introducing the background of Bhangra music, involving the participants in creating the distinctive rhythms that underpin those iconic Bhangra beats. The workshops are great fun and are enjoyed by people of all ages
It’s all very light-hearted, and in no time at all the entire crowd – from grandparents to grandkids and everyone in between – will be up and dancing and really enjoying themselves

18:30-17:30 Hotsteppas
Hailing from Bristol, Hotsteppas are an energetic 8-piece Reggae band who always deliver an exciting live show. Originally formed by three Reggae Soundsystem crews – Hotsteppas offer a Roots Reggae sound infused with a modern Dub edge and a sprinkling of Funk and Latin influence.

20:00-21:00 Matuki
Fusing traditional afro-beat sounds with some heavy doses of contemporary urban funk, Matuki is a 12 piece Afro- Beat/ Afro- Funk band who immediately win their audiences over with sizzling horns, tuff bass-lines, interlocking guitars & soaring vocals. Led by master drummer and lead vocalist, Abraham Ebou, they released their debut album, Injo, in March this year. It has jazz & psychedelic influences too, resulting in mesmerising tunes with heavyweight horn lines. Matuki have played at Glastonbury, Shambala and their home city of Bristol’s, Colston Hall.

For further event info, head to our website: 


24th June

A FREE Post Festival Midsummer Poetry & Prose Picnic, Cripplegate Park, 2 PM.

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