Events, Recent & Forthcoming
Given the COVID-19 virus outbreak, please check with hosts and venues to ensure up-to-date information for the listings below. Heartfelt thanks and best wishes to all the wonderful event organisers, venue and box office staff, festival volunteers, bookshop staff and audiences who have been caught up with the unfolding cancellation of events.
Thursday, February 27 – 7.45pm, Out-Spoken, Purcell Room, Southbank Centre, London SE1 8XX. SOLD OUT.
Monday, March 9 – 7.30pm, Land Yacht Regatta (LYR), Brudenell Social Club, Leeds. On sale.
Tuesday, March 10 – 7.30pm, Land Yacht Regatta (LYR), Hoxton Hall, London. On sale.
Friday, March 13 – 6.00pm, Simon Armitage at Lyra, Bristol’s Poetry Festival in association with University of Bristol’s Poetry Institute and Department of English. Wills Memorial Building (Great Hall), Queens Rd, Bristol BS8 1RJ. On sale.
LAUREATE’S LIBRARY TOUR, March 16-21 has been postponed, given the COVID-19 virus outbreak. Ticket-holders please contact the host library, details and links below.
In particular The British Library Box Office will make ticket refunds available from 16.3.2020 https://www.bl.uk/about-us/contact-us
Simon Armitage says —
March 16-21 – The Laureate’s Library Tour. Using the alphabet as a guide, for a week each spring for the next decade Simon Armitage will give readings across the UK, from the flagship libraries of the big cities to smaller libraries serving local communities. It’s a journey that celebrates the library as one of the great and necessary institutions of human civilisation.
The A-B Libraries Tour is the first week of his 10-year adventure.
Monday, March 16
- POSTPONED – Ashby-de-la-Zouch Library. Local student-centred celebration with Simon Armitage. No public tickets available due to limited capacity. (Please see below for Kenilworth Library’s live-streaming event, Friday, March 20, instead)
- POSTPONED – Belper Library – 2.30-4.00pm, Simon Armitage at the new Belper Library on Derwent Street. Derbyshire County Council. Strictly ticket only due to limited capacity. Please book here. NOW FULLY BOOKED
POSTPONED –Tuesday, March 17 – 2.00-3.30pm, Bucksburn Library, Aberdeen City Libraries. A community celebration with Simon Armitage, also highlighting Doric (North-East Scots) and the poetry and prose written in Doric which can be borrowed from Aberdeen’s diverse libraries. Local guest poet, Magnus Dixon, Foyle Young Poet winner. Due to limited capacity, only a small number of public tickets will be available. To book, please email LibraryEvents@aberdeencity.gov.uk NOW FULLY BOOKED
POSTPONED – Wednesday, March 18 – 12:30pm, Simon Armitage with Leontia Flynn at The Linen Hall Library, Belfast – a celebration, with local student and community groups, of the oldest library in Belfast and last subscription library in Ireland, yet accessible to all. Renowned for its Irish and local studies collections, as part of the event the Library will reflect the alphabet theme of the tour by displaying its unique Robert McAdam Comparative Lexicon (c.1885), handwritten volumes of Irish words and their equivalents in 28 other languages, from Scottish to Manx Gaelic to Sanskrit.
Thursday, March 19
- POSTPONED – Bacup Library, Lancashire County Council. A celebration with Simon Armitage, two local schools, the library’s creative writing group and other community groups. Strictly ticket only. Due to limited capacity, only a few tickets are available via the library for the general public.
- POSTPONED– Bootle Library, Sefton Borough Council, Liverpool City Region’s Borough of Culture 2020. A student and community celebration with Simon Armitage of the Human Library project. Local guest poets: Eira Murphy, Liverpool Young Poet Laureate / Foyle Young Poets winner, and Amina Atiq, BBC Words First Finalist 2019. Invited local groups, strictly ticket only.
POSTPONED – Friday, March 20 – 7.30-9.00pm, Simon Armitage at The British Library, London, NW1 2DB. Local guest poets: Theresa Lola, Young People’s Laureate for London, and Joelle Taylor, award-winning poet and founder of the national youth slam championships SLAMbassadors. Please note: at the time of writing £5 standing places are still for sale but all seats sold out unexpectedly rapidly. The British Library Box Office will make ticket refunds available from 16.3.2020 https://www.bl.uk/about-us/contact-us
Under ‘B is for British Library’, the Living Knowledge Network (LKN), a UK-wide partnership of national and public libraries created by the British Library, is kindly live-streaming the above March 20 event to participating libraries listed below. These live-screened events are open to the public. Seats are either low cost or free, but often booking is required. Please click each library below for tickets or enquire at the library in advance.
All events below POSTPONED
- Barnstaple Library, please enquire at the library in advance, free but donations welcome
- Bromsgrove Library, please enquire at the library in advance
- Glasgow, please enquire at the library in advance
- The Hive, Worcester
- Huddersfield Library
- Hull Central Library
- Kenilworth Library
- Malvern Library, please enquire at the library in advance
- Marsden Library
- Middlesbrough Library, please bring your ticket to Central Library for a full refund.
- Norwich and Norfolk Millennium Library, please enquire at the library in advance
- Poole Library, please book your free place by phoning 01202 262449 or email email@example.com
- Redditch Library, please enquire at the library in advance
- POSTPONED – Saturday, March 21 – Abington Library, Northampton. Small community celebration with Simon Armitage hosted by Friends of Abington Library. Limited capacity, so no public tickets available. (Please see above for Kenilworth Library’s live-streaming event on Friday March 20, instead)
Huge thanks to all the A and B libraries across the UK who got in touch with their ideas for a visit during the above Tour. Inevitably travel logistics played a part in the final selection but Simon Armitage really appreciates everyone’s interest and support. Invitations will open in Autumn 2020 for the C-Dd Libraries Tour in Spring 2021 . Guidance can be found here.
Thursday, March 26 – 7.30pm, A Laureate Reading featuring Sandettie Light Vessel Automatic, The Helicon, Heaney HomePlace, 45 Main Street, Bellaghy, BT45 8HT. Almost sold out. POSTPONED
Saturday, March 28 – 7.30pm, Simon Armitage in Hunmanby, Hunmanby Community Centre, Stonegate, Hunmanby, Filey, N. Yorks, YO14 0NS. SOLD OUT, waiting list for returns. Please check with the organisers re postponement.
Friday, April 3 – 7.30pm, An Evening with Simon Armitage at Cutty Sark, King William Walk, Greenwich SE10 9HT. Postponed.
Wednesday, April 22 – 8.00pm, Simon Armitage at Cúirt International Festival of Literature, Town Hall Theatre, Galway, Ireland. On sale. Following the announcement by An Taoiseach that all cultural institutions will close and all indoor mass gatherings of 100 people should be cancelled until 29 March, the venue for this event is currently closed currently until the end of the month. The current policy in Ireland may well be extended into April so please check back.
Sunday, April 26 – 5.00pm, Simon Armitage at Enfield Poets’ 20th Anniversary Literary Festival, Dugdale Centre, 39 London Road, Enfield EN2 6DS. Sold out. Postponed.
Wednesday, April 29 – 5.30pm, Poems on the Move: Winners’ Reading and 8.00pm, An Evening with Simon Armitage, Guernsey Literary Festival. Please see Festival’s cancellation and ticket refund statement.
Saturday, May 16 – 8.45pm, Get Down, Auckland Writers Festival – cancelled.
Sunday, May 17 –11:30am, Life’s Rich Tapestry, Auckland Writers Festival – cancelled.
Monday, June 22– 8.00pm, Mananan International Festival of Music and the Arts, Erin Arts Centre, Port Erin, Isle of Man. On sale from Mar 11.
Friday, June 26 – 7.00pm, Simon Armitage & Ifor Ap Glyn, Theatre Clwyd, Mold, Flintshire, CH7 1YA. On sale.
Saturday, July 4 – Simon Armitage: Wilderness Tracks and DJ set, Timber Festival, Feanedock, the National Forest, DE12 6DQ. Early bird tickets on sale.
Sunday, August 2 – Land Yacht Regatta (LYR) at Underneath the Stars, Cawthorne near Barnsley, South Yorkshire. On sale.