PERFORMANCE: Laurie Bolger ‘Talking to Strangers’

Saturday 6 July, 6:30pm  Bookings

Laurie Bolger is a stand-up poet and presenter based in London. She has performed and hosted venues such as The Royal Albert Hall, Old Vic Theatre and St Paul’s Cathedral and has been Poet in Residence in various public spaces including The Ivy House Pub and Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

Her ‘Talking to Strangers’ performance brings you stories and chats about comfort food, supermarket meltdowns, tea and pub love. Her warm and witty poems ask the big questions: how does that annoying passenger on the bus turn out to be the stranger that saves the day?  Sometimes, when life is lonely, strangers give us the answers we need.

Laurie was lead facilitator for BBC 1Xtra’s Words First and has received national airplay on the BBC Radio 1, 1Xtra and BBC Radio 3’s The Verb. She was shortlisted for Young Poet Laureate of London, performing at major London venues and has also performed at festivals across the UK including Glastonbury.

“The Poet in Residence of my heart” Phill Jupitus

“If I could jump into Laurie’s poems I would. I imagine it’d be lovely and warm in there.” Hollie McNish


Photo: by Caro Pak

PERFORMANCE: After Hours – Music & Poetry by Jade Cuttle and Ben Norris


Friday 5 July, from 6pm  Bookings

Join us on the opening night of our Festival of the Spoken Word weekend for a poetry performance by Ben Norris and a jam session with singer-songwriter and spoken word performer Jade Cuttle as well as a chance to meet the performers and poets ahead of Saturday’s series of events. The Mess restaurant and bar will be open for the evening.

Ben Norris is a poet, playwright and actor. He is two-time national poetry slam champion – 2017 BBC Poetry Slam and 2013 UK All-Stars Poetry Slam – and has appeared everywhere from Latitude Festival to the Proms at the Royal Albert Hall. His debut solo show, ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Family’, won the 2015 IdeasTap Underbelly Award at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival before touring the UK and Australia, and his first short film, commissioned by Channel 4, was nominated for a Royal Television Society Award.

Jade has performed her poetry on BBC Radio 3 (‘The Miracle of Mould’) and in association with BBC Proms (‘The Art of Splinters’). She has been commissioned to write for other BBC podcasts such as celebrating Shakespeare’s 400th anniversary through song (‘I can’t fall in love with the night’) and spoken word specials on BBC Introducing (‘Contains Strong Language’). Jade is a double recipient of the Foyle Young Poet Award, she also won 1st place in the 2014 BBC Proms’ Poetry Competition.

Jade is a singer-songwriter, translating metaphor into melody. Her debut album of poem-songs ‘Leaves & Lovers’ is inspired by the humble-hearted wisdom and resilience of nature, released to BBC Introducing acclaim. Her next album of poem-songs, including ‘Maggots’ and ‘Algal Bloom’, will be released through Warren Records in 2019 with funding and support from PRS Foundation and Make Noise.

PERFORMANCE: Sugar J and Bump Kin

Saturday 6 July, 5pm  Bookings

Razor sharp poetry focused on relationship struggles, diaspora, rum and love; Modern day psalms set in lo-fi soundscapes and head-nodding beats.

Sugar J and Bump Kin are a duo blurring the lines between spoken word, poetry and hip-hop. They started making work together as poet and producer after meeting as Barbican young poets in 2016, and debuted at Summer Poetry X in 2017 and will be making their Festival of the Spken Word debut this year.

EVENT: Close-Out Party – DJ Set with Mat Osman from Suede

Saturday 6 July, 7:30pm  Bookings

Come along and hear Mat Osman – musician and bassist from iconic British Rock band Suede – spin some tunes in our thirteenth century barn. Suede was one of the finest bands to come out of the UK in the first half of the 1990s and their debut album, released in 1992, won the Mercury Music Prize.

Whilst the band went their separate ways in 2003 they reformed in 2010 and last year, released a new album. When not touring with the band or writing and promoting novels, Mat likes to play loud, badly behaved records from 1960 to 2019 in the shape of funk, soul, glam, electro and rock ‘n’ roll.

EVENT: Small Step, Giant Leap – A lunar landing-inspired intervention by Bruce Munro

Bruce_Munro_Small_Step_Giant_Leap (Events page)

Saturday 20 July, 7:30pm  Bookings

On 20 July 1969 astronaut Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon – a moment that those who witnessed it will never forget.

Drawing inspiration from this life-changing event artist Bruce Munro will present Small Step, Giant Leap – an unscheduled landing in our thirteenth century barn on Saturday 20 July 2019 to mark 50 years since the lunar landing. Projected on to the vast stonewalls of the barn will be the artist’s visualisation of the moon created from an animated projection, which takes Armstrong’s now iconic words translated into Morse code to create an abstract visual pattern. Artist Christopher Kurtz’s suspended wooden constellations – on show in the barn from 13 July – 1 September – will complement this lunar intervention.

Small Step – Giant leap is a recognition of that single feat, and incredible moment in history, and features a sound element of the original NASA recordings between Mission control, Apollo 11 and the Lunar Module.

Preview screening at 7.30pm
Post-landing supper with Bruce Munro at 8pm