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Based in Carlisle, Cumbria in the United Kingdom. Caldew Press publishes anthologies and collections of poetry, prose, artwork and other curious work created by local writers and artists.
If you want to contact Caldew Press about a publication, a collection, an anthology, a book, a workshop, or any other project please get in touch, letting us know your name, email and a little about your idea.
Or email us direct at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo courtesy of @leahpenn.photography
from Kendal Zine Fest 26th November 2023
Caldew Press is an independent small press based in Carlisle, run by Phil Hewitson, that specialises in publishing mostly local Cumbrian poets and authors, as well as other writers and artists from further afield.
Begun by Nick Pemberton in 2016, Caldew Press has published a number of poetry collections for the likes of Annie Foster, Tony Hendry, Martyn Halsall, David Simmons, Hazel Stewart & Crysse Morrison and John Hegley.
Mark Griffiths’ ‘GRID - an outside inside journey through Cumbria’ published by Caldew Press, was runner up for the 'Lakeland Book of the Year Awards 2022, Wordsworth Grasmere Award for Literature and Poetry'.
Recent collections published by Caldew Press include work from the Carlisle SpeakEasy group and Brampton Poets.
Caldew Press came about because Nick Pemberton had been told a few times by a few people that it would be a good idea to collate some of the poetry performed at SpeakEasy open mic events.
He had been a co-editor of the collection ‘Watershed' which raised over £1000 for the flood appeal in 2015, with Geraldine Green and Ann Grant/Wilson published through Harestone Press.
The anthology 'SpeakEasy Magazine issue no.1 (2017) came about, shortly after a trial of a specific collection of sonnets (2016), and Issue 2 arrived in May 2018.
The SpeakEasy anthologies were the primary thrust of Caldew Press, and the Freiraum project was the next work in development, when Nick sadly died.
Philip Hewitson, who had been closely working with Nick on a number of projects, asked Susan Cartwright-Smith to take on the job of producing the Freiraum collection, which she did, developing publishing knowledge acquired from Carlisle Writers Group's Christmas collection, along with learning some skills on the job, and studying the format of previous collections and suggestions Nick had made in the past.
SpeakEasy Magazine issue 3 was trundling along separately, and after Freiraum, we published SpeakEasy 3 in early 2019, which had partly become a memorial edition, paying tribute to Nick.
Caldew Press is carrying on, and while Nick may have had some visions for it, he also liked experimentation and wasn't afraid to try things. His guidelines are just that - we showcase local writers and artists, we aim for inclusivity, and community projects, and we are a voice for the monthly SpeakEasy gatherings (begun at The Source in 2004) which is one of the longest running spoken word events in Carlisle and is still going strong.
The project Mind Trees of the Urban Forest was able to utilise Caldew Press to publish an anthology based around mental health support, which went alongside the community exhibition, film and live music event.
We have so far produced several single author collections for Annie Foster, Tony Hendry, Martyn Halsall, David Simmons, Philip Hewitson, Mark Griffiths and John Hegley.
Susan left her role with Caldew Press in November 2021, after three very successful years, to pursue other creative avenues and poetry challenges.
Caldew Press is continuing to work with exciting poets and to produce a number of new collections, some reflecting the COVID-19 pandemic years we have all lived through since 2020, as well as an array of other work.