Kimpton Folk Festival Update

Good news, due to some extra funding the workshops at Kimpton Folk Festival are now absolutely free! The weather is set to be perfect, so what better way to spend a day; a poetry workshop at 2pm, then relaxing with a drink on the village green listening to some amazing music, a story or two, then going to a ceilidh or a concert. Sounds perfect to me, see you there!

Poetry comes to Kimpton Folk Festival!

Poetry is being added into the mix of music , dance and storytelling this year and I’m delighted to be running a poetry workshop in the afternoon. Kimpton Folk Festival is a lovely one day festival in the village of Kimpton in Hertfordshire. There’s plenty to do and see including dancing, a variety of workshops, open mic concerts, real ales, artisan street food, crafts, children’s games, buskers, storytellers, ceilidh- and a full day of free concerts on the village green.
Come along and try your hand!

Poetry at Sidmouth Folk Festival

First exciting news of 2018! –  Sidmouth Folk Festival the amazing week long celebration of music, song and dance that has been part of the festival calendar since 1955 is introducing poetry workshops this year and I’ll be running them!  The festival in Devon is known for featuring established stars of the folk scene as well as emerging artists and has a huge range of  concerts, sessions, ceilidhs, talks, story telling and spectacular dance displays as well as over 200 workshops.  Accompanied by the sound of seagulls and Morris dancers, I’ll be showing you that anyone can write a poem, all you need is a pen, some paper and your imagination.

http://sidmouthfolkweek.co.uk/

Here It Is!

No two days as a veterinary surgeon are the same and nothing can prepare you for the constant upheaval in your emotions.  I’ve sat on the floor with a distraught drug addict unable to come to terms with his dog’s terminal illness. I’ve been spat on, sworn at and threatened. I’ve also been trusted, respected and loved. I’ve seen cases of cruelty and neglect but also moments of extreme tenderness and dedication, I’ve known people go without food so they can afford medication for their pets and I’ve known people whose only reason for getting up in the morning is their animals. The consulting room is a privileged place and consulting effectively is an art as well as a science. The ability to draw out the back story and to get to the heart of the matter is a skill that is learnt over time. The farm is also a unique environment and farmers have that particular mix of bluntness and practical capability, there’s a roughness there but a gentleness too. The beasts they look after have an honesty and in the case of cattle and horses a majesty as well, which I still find awe inspiring. Seeing people’s interactions with their animals is a window into their own emotions and whatever secrets people have they can rarely conceal the truth where their pets are concerned.

This is an extract from an article I wrote for Poetry News earlier this year.