Poetry Swindon
Poetry Swindon welcomes all who read, perform, write, or engage in poetry in any way, and aims to enhance the life of poetry in Swindon. We’d love you to join in with us - enjoy more poetry, read more poetry, and be part of buzz that is Swindon’s poetry scene… it only exists because of you - our energized, passionate, and wonderful poetry audience​​​.

​​About us - Poetry Swindon started in September 2008 as a group dedicated to helping poetry thrive in Swindon. Originally known as BlueGate Poets, its early meetings were in the sitting room of the Richard Jefferies Museum, with the name and logo inspired by the little arched gate of the old farm house. It seems fitting that the place is now our proper home.
We are also delighted to be running the Battered Moon poetry competition again, for 2018. For full details about this year's competition, with guest judge Jacob Sam La-Rose and top prize of £700, please visit our page here.
Poetry Swindon Festival 2018
Yes, we are already well under way for this year's festival...

​Put the dates in your diary - 4th to 8th October 2018

"Swindon! Where your poems turn into films & transform museum walls, where you perform in twinkling chequerboard tents, where sunsets bleed into fat moons while bonfires crackle with song."

Ben Bransfield (Primers: Volume 2, Nine Arches Press 2017)

For 2018 we have an exciting line-up of poetry and community activity to bring us all together and leave us feeling inspired, happy and ready to read, write and listen to more!

A FESTIVAL PASS may be purchased for all 5 days (excluding workshops - please book these separately), or a DAY PASS (excluding workshops) - all other tickets can be bought on the door for £5 each (subject to availability).

Please note, all workshops must be pre-booked here.
ASK ABOUT PAYING BY INSTALMENTS: hilda@richardjefferies.org

Book tickets 
Resident Poets
Our resident poets for 2018 are Clare Shaw and Nicholas McLachlan, with Jacob Sam Le Rose as judge and performer for Battered Moons during the festival. We have Debra Alma, The Emergency Poet, booked for all-day on Thursday 4th October, so make sure you get a dose of brilliant poetry to last all five wonderful days. Carrie Etter will be back with exciting editors to discuss your publishing dreams with: Tony Frazer of Shearsman and Laurie Smith, one of Magma Poetry's founders.

Clare Shaw was born in Burnley in 1972, and her poetry finds its roots in place and an uncompromising voice. Clare was described by the Arvon Foundation as "one of the country's most dynamic young poets". She has two collections from Bloodaxe: Straight Ahead (2006), which attracted a Forward Prize Highly Commended for Best Single Poem; and Head On (2012), which is, according to the Times Literary Supplement: “fierce … memorable and visceral”. Her third collection will be published by Bloodaxe in 2018. She is also a mental health trainer, activist and author: recent publications include "Otis Doesn't Scratch: talking to young children about self-injury" (PCCS Books, 2015); and “Our Encounters with Self-Harm” (2013).

Nicholas McLachlan was born in Dublin and now lives in Ventry, Co Kerry from where he writes and teaches. His long-awaited first collection of poetry, The Rain Barrel, was published by Salmon Poetry in 2015. The following year he was awarded the Patrick and Katherine Kavanagh Fellowship. He was director of Dingle Writing Courses, which from 1996—2010 ran an annual programme of residential writing courses featuring tutors from Ireland, the UK and US.
Poetry Swindon Events
Poetry Swindon meets regulary at the Richard Jefferies Museum, at least monthly, for a writing session plus an open mic. We also offer a weekly day-time writing session with poet Bethan Rees for well-being and creativity. Our Battered Moons Poetry Competition is now open. We also welcome you to become a member and help us continue the work we do in the community as well as for local poets, bringing great poetry to Swindon. You also recieve 15% off events and be in our annual anthology published at Christmas. To become a member, click the button below and click on the TICKET link on our Eventbrite page.
Our regular events include Write Poetry (Monday evenings), Poetry in the Sitting Room (Monday evenings), Write Away (Monday mornings), and special events, such as workshops with Martyn Crucifix (March) and Bob Walton (April), our Garden Party (June), and of course the festival itself. Watch this space as more events are added.
Book tickets