Carlisle Folk Experience

John Hegley and Errant Thieves joined Jean Hill's Carlisle Folk Experience at the RAOB Club in Carlisle on Thursday 9th December 2021, for an evening of music and poetry, including readings and performances from A Scarcity of Biscuit, recently published by Caldew Press.

For more information or to purchase a copy of John Hegley's A Scarcity of Biscuit please email:


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David Simmons and Mark Griffiths launched their poetry collections at Cakes & Ale cafe in Carlisle on Friday 5th November 2021 with an evening of readings and performances from Carlisle in Haiku Form and GRID, recently published by Caldew Press.

Thanks to Steve, Frida and Lucy for making the evening happen.

Both books are available from Bookends in Carlisle priced £8.00.

For more information about the collections please email:


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We shared some lovely pieces inspired by John Keats, and then John Hegley (accompanied by Cristina's beautiful Italian translations, and occasionally Phil playing the part of John Keats) entertained us with a wonderful collection of poems, songs and thoughts based around Keats.

He was thrilled with all our paper fishes, our poems and letters, and for the warm welcome. It was a really fun event and a huge thank you to everyone who was able to join us.

Hopefully we can meet in real life in the not too distant future!


'Writing, Drawing and Drawing out the Creative' with John Hegley.

John Hegley led an online workshop with Caldew Press on Zoom on Saturday 14th November 2020.

There was a wonderful creative mix and he was really thrilled with all the responses, and particularly liked the drawings of all the biscuits!

He looks forward to hopefully doing some more stuff with us in the not too distant future.


Earth Day:

Poetry for a Purpose

To celebrate Earth Day we held an online Zoom event so people could share some of the prose, poetry, prose-poetry, flash-fiction and articles, eco-worriers and eco-warriors contributed to eco collection 'Poetry for a Purpose' published by Caldew Press. 

Climate emergency, extinction rebellion, sustainability and environmental disasters seem to be a uniting and driving force among, particularly, younger people and giving voice to concerns is a healthy way to examine our fears and educate others. Boundaries, barriers and horizons - we can also be hopeful, and look beyond the constraints we encounter.

This event was more a preview of the collection than a book launch. 'Poetry for a Purpose' is available on Amazon but it would be nice to do a physical launch event at some point in the future. 

Contributors will receive their free copies in due course once things have returned to a kind of normality we will announce further details regarding an event and for distributing copies of the anthology. 

Many thanks to all who contributed as we try to change the world with words! Hope everyone is keeping safe and well.

December 2019

Fresh Air

by Tony Hendry

Book Launch

Cakes and Ale cafe in Carlisle hosted the launch of 'Fresh Air' by Tony Hendry, published by Caldew Press, on Monday 9th December 2019.

Working with Carlisle Eden Mind, Cornerstones Artists and Writers Groups (part of the Glenmore Trust), with Tony Mason, Watchtree Nature Reserve, Linden Print Artists, Cumbrian writers, artists, film-makers and musicians, and supported by Patchwork Opera CIC and Cumbria County Council, Mind Trees of the Urban Forest explores how isolation, forest bathing, connection, meditation, communication, support, and the urban and rural contrast affect our mental health.

Taking the form of a multi-media installation, with a spoken word event to bring the scattered seeds together, we invite people to explore their connections, their responses and to know that the forest path can lead to wellness. The installation, forming part of the Carlisle Collective Fringe, encourages participation, shared response, sensory exploration, and supportive reaction. The accompanying film created by Tolivar Productions uses work from this anthology, testimonials from people on the forest path, and music created specifically for the project.


August 2019

Mind Trees of the Urban Forest

This project uses trees, and the path through the forest, to explore our connection to our own psyche, and that of those around us. Our mental health and spiritual connection to others becomes a forest: roots put down; protective canopy unfurled.

SpeakEasy Farewell to Foxes Cafe

First SpeakEasy at Foxes Cafe

Mind Trees of the Urban Forest

Writing Workshop

Led by Jean Hill

WatchTree Nature Reserve was the location for a writing workshop held on 26th May 2019. Writers took part in the workshop which was led by Jean Hill. She organised tasks and prompts which encouraged people to look at nature and mental health in different ways and produce work from fresh perspectives as part of the 'Mind Trees of the Urban Forest' project. Some of the pieces can be found in the 'Mind Trees' publication.

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