New family-friendly North Yorkshire literature festival launched

Top names such as Michael Rosen and Kate Fox are coming to a brand new North Yorkshire literature festival this weekend.

Poet and broadcaster Kate Fox who is coming to Ripon this weekend.
Poet and broadcaster Kate Fox who is coming to Ripon this weekend.

Running from today, Friday, October 13 to Sunday, October 15, the family-friendly Ripon Poetry Festival's programme also includes a guided Wilfred Owen Walk, the screening of a film-poem set in Ripon, poetry-workshops called Rhyme and Punishment for children at the Workhouse, Courthouse and Police museums, an evening of poetry from Syria and a performance in the Leper Hospital of an Anglo-Saxon epic poem.

Saturday will also see the launch of a new book, Ripon Yarns which includes work by the winners of the first Ripon Poetry Festival competition.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

Judged by local poets Elizabeth Spearman, David McAndrew and Andy Croft, the winners, who ranged from adult writers to the pupils of Grewelthorpe Primary School, will also receive hundreds of pounds worth of books in prizes.

The new festival has been devised by Ripon-based writers Andy Croft, Paul Mills and David McAndrew.

Co-organiser Andy Croft said the aim was to put the city back in the literary spotlight for poetry.

He said: “Although Ripon enjoys some important literary associations; Lewis Carroll and Wilfred Owen both wrote some of their most famous work while living in Ripon; poetry lovers usually have to travel to Ilkley, York or Middlesbrough to enjoy the best of contemporary poetry.

“We are hoping to change this with Ripon Poetry Festival.”

Tickets for events at this weekend’s Ripon Poetry Festival are available from the Little Ripon Bookshop in person or by phone on 01765 606689.