Lewisham Literary Festival 2011, September 9th - 16th

The full programme for the Lewisham Literary Festival is now live. Even without the children's events it's a big deal, with events ranging from performance poetry to talks by authors including crime writers Oliver Harris and Samuel Bonner and Booker long-listed Samantha Harvey.

The organisers hope it can become an established annual fixture and they're certainly setting the bar high in their first year.

Click here too for a children's poetry competition.


Anonymous said...

Once upon a time there were lots of libraries in Lewisham.......

shoppy said...

This neglected Literary Festival thread is like the ignored Waterstones stores versus the Brockley Market J D sports thread.

MalB said...

There are some interesting things om here, but I am a bit irritated that (a every event is being held in Hither Green and Central Lewisham and absolutely nothing in the north of the Borough (where statistics have shown a larger educational deficit) and (b) Lwisham's double standards in building up a literary festival whilst cutting back on the libraries.

If adults and children are prompted to read more as a result, where does the Council think they are going to read?

Perhaps the reason why nothing is being held around here is that the Council dare not do it when they've closed all our local libraries. We used have two at New Cross Gate within walking distance including the wonderful Carnegie one in the New Cross Road - now we have none.

Brockley Nick said...

@MalB - you misunderstand, this isn't a Council initiative, this is a private initiative, run by someone who occasionally posts here. Therefore, no obligation to do anything other than put on a good festival. Hither Green happens to be where the organiser lives.

Interesting reflexive assumption that these sort of things must be Council led, despite no reference to the Council in any of the articles or the event website.

patrick1971 said...

At the risk of sounding like Lou Baker, if there is a larger "educational deficit" in the north of the borough, maybe the organisers aren't putting things on there because they want to be sure of an audience! If people in the north of the borough are interested, they can make the exceedingly difficult and arduous 15 minute bus journey on a myriad of routes running at 10 minute intervals to central Lewisham, where they will also find a very large and extensively stocked library.

This festival is a great idea. As Nick's pointed out, it's not council run, it's the work of a few motivated individuals. As such it should be praised rather than criticised. I do wonder sometimes how anyone ever has the energy and drive to do anything, given the constant naysayers and carpers that accompany any initiative.

patrick1971 said...

I should point out I'm not associated with the festival in any way; I'm just someone who is looking forward to attending a few of the events that others have worked hard to make happen.

Lewisham LitFest said...

@MalB - the LitFest has got some funding from the Council (from the Local Assembly fund, which is voted on by residents) but as Nick and Patrick have said, they've had no other involvement.

It's Lewisham SE13 rather than Lewisham borough (though I can see how that's open to misinterpretation) partly because the Assembly Fund is from Lewisham Central ward and partly because the LitFest has had a shedload of logistical help from the Hither Green Hall group and they helped get access to local venues. And Lewisham really does have a lack of suitable places!

Otoh, the poetry competition is open to any young person in the borough. After the Festival's over the plan is to work closer with schools on more creative literacy projects. They'll likely be local to Lewisham Central at first, but there's nothing to say we can't go wider.

@shoppy Heh ;-)

Lewisham LitFest said...

Actually, I should also say that the Lewisham Library Service have been incredibly supportive! They've programmed the event at Manor House and arranged the venues for two other events - but the funding that means those events are free entry came from the Arts Council!

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