Protest in Sheffield

I’ll be revisiting one of my former home towns shortly to take part in the Sheffield Festival of Debate 2018. Pre-children, my wife and I lived in the Walkley Bank area of the city from 1994-95, when I briefly returned to journalism after graduating from the Creative Writing MA at the University of East Anglia. While my wife took up a one-year post at Sheffield University Library, I commuted to Bradford three days a week for my job as a sub-editor on the Telegraph and Argus newspaper.

I’ve been back to Sheffield several times down the years and am looking forward to dropping by once again on May 9th for a panel event at the festival, where I’ll be reading from and discussing my short story, Withen, which is set locally and centres on the so-called Battle of Orgreave in the summer of 1984, during the miners’ strike. The story appears in Protest: Stories of Resistance (Comma Press 2017), and I’ll be sharing a stage with Joanna Quinn, whose story based on the Greenham Common peace camp is also in the anthology.

The event will be chaired by the activist, broadcaster and writer, John Rees, one of the consultants for the book, in which writers are paired with social and cultural historians, academics and other experts, to produce short-fiction and accompanying contextual commentaries based on political protests spanning more than 600 years of British history. It forms part of a series of sessions on democracy and activism at this year’s Festival of Debate, now in its fourth year, and which runs to the end of June.

The Protest event is at 7pm on Wednesday May 9th in the Millennium Gallery, 48 Arundel Gate, Sheffield, S1 2PP. To book tickets and to find out about other events, please click on this link to the festival’s website

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