Programme 2016

The Story exploded
Hunter Club, Bury St Edmunds
Friday October 7
7.30pm till late
£3+fees BOOK HERE

A unique night of alternative storytelling featuring Ross Sutherland, Luke Wright and The Hosepipe Band with Martin Newell


Ross Sutherland

Having already written four collections of poetry, three stage shows and a documentary about whether computers will ever be able to pen poetry, Ross Sutherland’s work is synonymous with creative exploration.

Here Ross will be taking to the stage to perform pieces from his My Imaginary Advice podcast that probes, tickles and toys with traditional storytelling techniques. Never before performed live, it is not to be missed.

More information

Luke WrightLuke-Wright-Production__23bw

After a sell-out festival show in the festival’s first year, Luke Wright returns with his critically acclaimed What I Learned From Johnny Bevan.

Described by the Guardian as a “pulsating piece of poetic storytelling”, this one man play is a story of shattered friendship, class ceilings, and the hollow reality of the New Labour dream.

At university the whip-smart, mercurial Johnny Bevan saves Nick, smashing his comfortable, middle class bubble and firing him up about politics, music and literature. Twenty years later, as their youthful dreams disintegrate with the social justice they hoped for, can Nick save Johnny from himself?

Winner of The Stage Award for acting excellence and best Spoken Word Show at the Saboteur Awards 2016.

More information

Martin Newell and The Hosepipe BandMartin and the Hosepipes 03

As well as a versatile musician and a sharp columnist, Martin Newell is an established poet with several collections to his name. He also writes long epic poems.

In a unique experiment, three of these are now being performed, accompanied by music composed by The Hosepipe Band, a five-piece Essex ceilidh band, and played on a wide variety of instruments including, Dulcimer, Saxophone, Hurdy gurdy, Electric guitar, Double bass, Concertina, Bagpipes, Mandola, Footbass and Keyboards.

The group has performed at a range of literary and music events including London’s Union Chapel, Folk East, The Essex Book Festival and Latitude Festival.

Suffolk Festival of Ideas will see Martin and the band perform Black Shuck – the legend of the ghostly dog which has haunted East Anglia since Viking times, and The Green Children – the story of two children “of unusual skin colour” who appeared in the Suffolk village of Woolpit in the 12th century.

More information on their website:

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Wild tales from the story shed
Lackford Lakes, Bury St Edmunds
Saturday October 8


Talks and all activities FREE (donations to Suffolk Wildlife Trust)
To book a FREE place on the Writing Workshop with Paul Evans please click here

Listen to some of the brightest names in wildlife writing while immersed in nature at one of the county’s most important nature reserves. For one day only the main bird hide at Lackford will be transformed into a story shed as authors including Paul Evans and Melissa Harrison read from their works. Dr Evans will also be hosting a writing workshop and Off the Press will be holding a free family screen-printing session, with the chance to create your own T-shirt.

Melissa Harrison credit Brian David Stevens

Melissa Harrison is a novelist, nature writer and columnist. Her second novel, At Hawthorn Time, was shortlisted for the Costa Novel Award 2015 and longlisted for the Baileys Women’s Prize for Fiction, while Rain: Four Walks in English Weather was longlisted for this year’s Wainwright Prize. She lives in South London.


Image credit – Maria Nunzia @Varvera

Paul Evans is a nature writer, radio broadcaster and senior lecturer in creative writing at Manchester Metropolitan University Cheshire. He is best known as a country diarist for the Guardian and is the author of Field Notes from the Edge – a journey through Britain’s secret wilderness. He holds a PhD in philosophy and sometimes a dog and lives in Shropshire with his family.

Kate Blincoe lower res
Kate Blincoe 
is the author of The No-Nonsense Guide to Green Parenting and is a freelance writer, contributing to a wide range of publications including the Guardian’s Country Diary and the East Anglian Daily Times.

Matt Gaw

Matt Gaw is a nature writer whose country diary appears in the Suffolk Magazine. He is the editor of Suffolk Wildlife magazine and has recently contributed to Autumn: An Anthology for the Changing Seasons. He is currently writing his first non-fiction book.

Off The Press 
are an emerging team of creatives who are establishing their artistic service collective within the historic market town of Bury St Edmunds. Specialising in the production of high quality screen prints and passionate about keeping the traditional processes alive, the group have experience of putting on workshops and live printing. Off The Press strive to uphold a responsibility to the environment by only using earth-friendly, water-based inks approved by the Soil Association.

Booking is not necessary for the print workshop or story-shed events.

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Molly Naylor

Telling Your Stories workshop
Abbeygate Cinema, Bury St Edmunds
Friday October 7 & Saturday October 8

Workshops with writer in residence Molly Naylor
Friday 5pm-6pm 
Saturday  4pm-5pm
(no booking required but please do register your interest by clicking the times above)

A chance for non-performers to join writer-in-residence and compere Molly Naylor to learn how to share a story on stage or in front of your friends. There will be the opportunity to put what you have learnt into practice at 5pm (although no obligation!)

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An evening of real life stories themed on Bury St Edmunds
Performed by the people of Bury St Edmunds
Abbeygate Cinema, Bury St Edmunds

Saturday October 8
5pm – 6pm

Experience the thrill of true stories told by members of the Bury St Edmunds community in this unique and intimate event. Life-affirming, silly, fun and friendly. If you would like to take part email

The show also features an exhibition of the returned journals handed out during the launch event and distributed around Bury St Edmunds.

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This story sings 
featuring Jemima Foxtrot and Brigitte Aphrodite (plus free workshop)
Hunter Club, Bury St Edmunds

Saturday October 8
7.30pm till late

£3+fees BOOK HERE

A once in a lifetime opportunity to see two rare talents on the same bill. Evocative, energetic, moving and often hilarious, both Jemima Foxtrot and Brigitte Aphrodite use spoken word and music to create a performance that lives long in the memory. Brigitte, who be hosting a workshop after the show, will be performing songs from her forthcoming album and her critically acclaimed self-penned musical My Beautiful Black Dog.

JemimaJemima Foxtrot blends powerful, sonic heavy poetry about modern life with snippets of her favourite artists’ songs – as well as her own – in a belting singing voice that will knock you for six.

Shortlisted for the Arts Foundation Spoken Word Fellowship 2015, Jemima performs extensively across the country. Her poetry film Mirror, commissioned by BBC Arts as part of their Women Who Spit series, is available on iPlayer. She has also appeared on Lynn Barber’s episode of Arts Night on BBC2.

Jemima’s debut poetry show Melody, won the spoken word award at Buxton Fringe Festival 2015 and was critically acclaimed at its run at the PBH Free Fringe at Edinburgh 2015, receiving several 4 star reviews.

Jemima recently performed in the Barbican main hall as part of Doug Aitken’s Station to Station project alongside poetry legends including Simon Armitage and Don Paterson for a special concert curated by and featuring Beck.

Jemima is also an experienced Workshop facilitator who works with children of all ages as well as with vulnerable adults. A star of last year’s festival, we are proud and privileged to welcome her back.

BrigitteBrigitte Aphrodite is a Punk Poet, Musician, Writer, Theatre Maker and Feminist Showgirl. Writer and performer of the critically acclaimed ‘My Beautiful Black Dog’. which tackles the beauteous complexity of our mental health and challenges the stigma around depression.

Live credits include Reading & Leeds festival, Latitude, Bestival and sold out runs at the South Bank WOW festival and Hackney Showroom.

Radio credits include BBC Radio 1 The Surgery, BBC Radio 4 front row.  TV credits include a BBC1 Culture Show feature &  BBC1 6pm &10pm news.
Panel chats on mental health include The Bush Theatre, Trouble Club with Ruby Wax and Bestival. Brigitte is a proud supporter of the Charity Arts Emergency & runs a creativity & mental health workshop in schools across the Uk.

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