CIF Round Four – Weardale WordFest, NorthPens
The October 2019 Weardale WordFest aimed to be a celebration of local writing and writers also featuring illustration, photography, journalism and performance work. The Northern Heartlands’ Community Initiative Fund allowed NorthPens to meet its aim of accessibility and inclusivity by helping make this event free to participants. WordFest included:
- The launch of Caroline Beck’s innovative ‘Ten words for a Northern Landscape’ podcasts.
- Talks covering topics such as poetry writing in prison, wildlife journalism, historical fiction, audio/podcast production and the publishing industry.
- Two participatory workshops: story writing and illustration (for children) and writing and performing poetry (adults)
- An evening performance in which local writers shared work newly created as part of the Northern Heartlands Living in a Landscape project with David Napthine and Agri[Culture] photography exhibition by Wideyed Photography Collective including responses to the images created by NorthPens and guest writers.
- Weardale craftspeople and artists were invited to set up a stall or exhibition alongside the general WordFest bookstall selling and promoting books by local writers.