Havant Literary Festival replaced by packed day of poetry

Bett Langford in the Cornish Pilot gig     

Picture: Eastney Crusing Assosciation

Age no barrier as Bett, 99, enjoys a row across the harbour

  • Literary festival put on hold for a year
  • Organisers taking a year off to focus on 2016’s event
  • Festival will instead put on a day of poetry workshops, readings and walks
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THE much-loved Havant Literary Festival is taking a break this year and instead poets will be serving up a feast of the spoken word.

On Saturday, September 12 food and drink will play a major part in workshops for poetry lovers.

There will be great beer and some positively popping performance poetry – what’s not to like?

Tim Dawes

The day begins at Nineveh, in The Pallant, in Havant town centre, with a workshop by Joan McGavin, who will be reviewing work and helping wordsmiths polish their style.

The action then moves to the South Street home of festival director Tim Dawes and his wife Sue where, over a light vegetarian lunch, there will be poetry readings from Denise Bennett.

From 5pm a poetry stroll, led by Tim, will take in the places where this year’s prize-winning and highly commended poetry competition entries will be published – posted up on telegraph poles and street lamps around Havant’s historic town centre.

Havant Brewery will play host to some of the liveliest performance poets in the south with Speak Word, Drink Beer, in the evening. It will be a performance with a difference set in The Tanneries where the award-winning micro brewery is based.

Merlynda the Monster Poet, Ellie Dawes, Audi Maserati, Sam Kirkby and Sliff Richards will be on stage.

After 10 years of the festival, organisers Lucy Flannery and Tim Dawes decided to take a break from the usual two-week extravaganza held each autumn.

With a focus firmly on poetry it gives organisers the chance to make 2016’s festival bigger than ever.

Tim said: ‘We are taking something of a break this year after two years of frantic activity.

‘However, we are still organising a few special events to keep the seat warm in autumn for 2016.

‘We are really looking forward to going back to the very lovely Havant Brewery – this time for a spoken word event. There will be great beer and some positively popping performance poetry – what’s not to like?’

All the events are ticketed. To buy tickets go to ticketsource.co.uk/havantlitfest.