Recent events and publications

July 23rd 2022     Ventnor Fringe

‘Beyond the Grave’: Memoir into Poetry

Robyn Bolam and Lydia Fulleylove

It was a great pleasure to take part in this event – and to help launch Lydia’s very special new collection, Ampersand (Valley Press).

March 18-20th 2022

It was a joy to return to West Dean College and Gardens to run a residential course, ‘Writing Poetry – New Beginnings’ with a very special group of poets. Thank you to all involved.


March 2022

Thank you to Words for the Wild for including my poem, ‘A Breath of Fresh Air’ on their beautiful website. You can read and listen to it at:

October 2021

October 11th at 7.30pm

I was delighted to be reading for Winchester Muse in their ‘Hampshire Laureate Series’ on Monday night, in the upstairs rooms at P&G Wells Bookshop, in College Street, Winchester.

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 It was slightly strange to be addressing a lap-top rather than the audience, but I think we were all just happy to be able to be together at last, one way or another! Grateful thanks to the Winchester Muse Team, especially Jenny McRobert and Patsy Rath, to P&G Wells Manager, Steve Scholey, and to all the Winchester Musers there and on-line who gave me such a warm welcome and to those who shared their poems, all greatly appreciated.

Also thanks to Hilary Hares for her generous, detailed review from which this extract is taken:

‘Monday, 11th October was a somewhat momentous evening for Winchester Muse.  Not only was it the first time Musers met face-to-face for nineteen months but it was also the inaugural meeting of our new, hybrid approach which blends live poetic voices with contributors on Zoom… Robyn’s work is both thoughtful and thought-provoking.  She has been described as ‘an assertive poet of emotional candour’ and as a result, the impact of her poetry lingers with the listener long after the poem has ended… The sheer range of Robyn’s poetic reach is remarkable… an evening of amazing poetry from a poet described by Bernard O’Donaghue as ‘compelling and accomplished … a poet of unusual talent’ and we’re hugely grateful to Robyn for appearing in person.’   Hilary Hares

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July 2021

Words for the Wild 

Saturday 10 July 5:00pm            FREE (booking needed)

In the first of our ‘Hampshire Poet Invites’ series we are excited to be able to present a group reading of some wonderful voices speaking up for the natural world.

Words for the Wild is an online poetry magazine, passionate in its focus on the natural world. Run by writers, Amanda Oosthuizen and Louise Taylor, and initially set up to save local ancient woodland, Words for the Wild has quickly become a treasured and highly-respected international platform for poems inspired by an engagement with the living world.

Readers for this event will include: Robyn Bolam, Alison Brackenbury, Sarah Doyle, Kate Firth, Raine Geoghegan, Chrissie Gittins, Suzanne Luppa, Sarah James/Leavesley, Lisa Kelly, Jane Lovell, Patrick Osada, and Elisabeth Sennitt Clough.

The Hampshire Poet invites series are carefully-curated readings in which Kathryn Bevis (Hampshire Poet 2020-21) invites local poetry organisations and their talent to showcase and celebrate the best of their work.

This event will be a live Zoom event. Tickets are free but should be booked.

December 2020

Here’s a poem to help you to look forward to the spring! I’m very happy that it’s part of the wonderful ‘Seasons’ exhibition at St Barbe’s Museum & Art Gallery, Lymington, Hampshire – and that the gallery has now reopened…

October 2020

Friday 2nd October  Edward Thomas Festival

Hampshire Poets Together: An evening of poetry.

Sit back, relax and join us for an evening of local (digital!), Hampshire poetry with Hampshire poets, Stephanie Norgate, Maggie Sawkins, John Haynes, Robyn Bolam and Steve O’Brien.

This poetry reading evening will take place over Zoom, bringing the poets into your living room as they share their work with you.

Click here to find out more and book your place!

August 2020

If, to celebrate his tercentenary, you would like to read my light-hearted (but genuinely appreciative) poem, ‘A Letter to Gilbert White’, please go to:

A Letter to Gilbert White by Robyn Bolam

July 2020

15th July

If you have a minute or two (literally) to spare, the Royal Literary Fund released my podcast, ‘The Classic Book I’d Like to Rewrite’ today. I chose Wordsworth’s The Prelude and you’ll find my thoughts on this at: 

Grateful thanks to the RLF.
14th July
The beautiful Words for the Wild website posted my poem, ‘Unsettled’ at:
There is also a podcast of the poem there.

Thanks to the indefatigable Barry Smith and his fellow editors, this year’s Poetry & All That Jazz appeared despite lockdowns and all else. Every good wish to the 2020 South Downs Poetry Festival!

Poetry & all that jazz 2020

June 2020

On 18th June, film director, Ian Cottage, released my poemfilm, ‘The Hunter Meets His Match’. You can find it at: and at:

Please watch if you have a minute to spare!

This was part of an exciting collaborative project, devised and completed by Ian, that also involved three other Bloodaxe poets: Miriam Gamble, Philip Gross and Helen Ivory. All the films are available on Ian’s website – grateful thanks to him and to Neil Astley.

On 9th June, the Royal Literary Fund released my podcast, ‘Writer’s Block’, at:

Robyn Bolam

Please listen! It will only take a few minutes.

May 2020

No. 80: NAWE Writing in Education

Edited by Lisa Koning 

It’s a pleasure to find my article, ‘A Local Laureateship Experience’ and poem, ‘In the spaces between’ (pp. 20-23) in such good company here.

This spring issue of the National Association for Writers in Education’s journal contains many inspiring articles, fascinating poems by Joan McGavin, and a review of Julian Stannard’s humane collection, full of wit and humour: Average is the New Fantastico, with artwork by Roma Tearne – and much more.

April 2020

April 18th 2020

Wonderful news in these strange times of lockdown – a new poetry anthology called:

No News, edited by Paul Munden, Alvin Pang & Shane Strange (Recent work press)

‘There is no news.’ 90 years after the BBC made that unique announcement (on 18 April), 90 poets chip in with their thoughts. The book is being launched via readings on its Facebook page – more are being added gradually – and had a spot on Jorvik Radio on launch day. You can find out more on the Recent Work Press webpage, as below. Poets, from all over the world, featured in this truly remarkable book, include Robyn Bolam,Lisa Brockwell,Andy Brown,Owen Bullock,Maggie Butt, Adrian David Caesar, Anne Caldwell, Priya Sarukkai Chabria, Aidan Coleman, Katharine Coles, Oliver Comins, Tricia Dearborn, Ian Duhig, Anne Elvey, David Fenza, Martin Figura, Caren Florance, Philip Gross, Oz Hardwick, Paul Hetherington, Helen Ivory, Andy Jackson, Penelope Layland, Glyn Maxwell, Alyson Miller, Graham Mort, Pooja Nansi, Katrina Naomi, Kerrie Anne Nelson, Gemma Nethercote Way, Nessa O’Mahony, Nat O’Reilly, Moya Pacey, Miles Salter, Matthew Stewart, Jen Webb, Jordan Williams, Kimberly K Williams.…/no-news-90-poets-reflect-on-…/

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November 20th 2019

A big thank you to the Royal Literary Fund for giving me the opportunity to record another podcast: ‘How Writing Changes Writers’. You’ll find it at:

Robyn Bolam

Please listen if you have 3 minutes to spare!

November 8-11th 2019


A big thank you to everyone who made this year’s NAWE conference in York such a wonderful experience. It’s always friendly, supportive and full of exciting ideas. I’m here with NAWE’s energetic Director, poet Seraphima Kennedy, and Jane Moss of ‘Joined up writers’, who is currently creating collaborative novels with students and in her own community. I was glad to share my experience of being a local laureate with the conference and to take part in a York launch of the much-praised Giant Steps poetry anthology (eds. Paul Munden & Shane Strange).

October 2019

Honoured to be invited to take part in the launch of Portsmouth Poets’ exciting new venture: ‘Away with Words’ on Monday 21st October. Join us if you can.


October 4th – 6th


Poetry writing – finding a distinctive voice

I’m looking forward to tutoring this residential course very soon.
Please check it out if you’d like to develop your poetry skills in the unique West Dean College and its beautiful gardens in October (near Chichester).

September 2019

The search for Hampshire Poet 2020 has begun!

Hampshire Cultural Trust (HCT) is working in partnership with Winchester Poetry Festival (WPF) to deliver the 2020 Hampshire Poet Laureate programme. The Hampshire Poet programme has been running every two years since 2008 and was last held by Robyn Bolam in 2018.

The Programme

The position of Hampshire Poet provides the opportunity for a Hampshire based poet (resident in and/or working in the county) to undertake commissions, lead workshops and give readings and talks throughout the county, and to act as an advocate for poetry and poets. Opportunities have been identified throughout 2020 for the Hampshire Poet to play a significant role, providing the poet with the chance to create new work, engage members of the community and connect to planned activities taking place across the county during the year.

  • Application deadline: Friday 15 November
  • Interviews undertaken: Thursday 12 December
  • Commission: January – December 2020

For more details, please see:

This will be a wonderful opportunity for a lucky Hampshire poet. Don’t forget the deadline!

August 2019

Thank you, once again, to the Royal Literary Fund for showcasing a podcast of mine:

It’s about writers who influenced me. Please listen if you have 3 minutes to spare!

July 2019

I’m very happy to have two new poems in this exciting anthology alongside the work of poets from all over the world which includes poems by Maggie Butt, Anne Caldwell, Maura Dooley, Philip Gross, Ian McMillan, Helen Mort, Mario Petrucci and others.


June 2019

Wednesday 12th June

The wonderful Royal Literary Fund have released this podcast of mine today:

It’s called ‘Why I Write’. Please listen if you have 3 minutes to spare!

Sunday, 9th June

Here we all are in Fitzroy House, Lewes for the launch of the beautifully illustrated anthology, Pale Fire: New Writing on the Moon which is full of fascinating poems by Grace Nichols, George Szirtes, Janet Sutherland, Maggie Harris, Maggie Butt, Clare Best, Chris Sykes, Jeremy Page, Kay Syrad and others – available from The Frogmore Press.

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Thursday 6 June 3pm at Cosham Library, Portsmouth, PO6 3EB

Community Conversations Poetry Workshop with Tongues&Grooves

Join Tongues & Grooves in the Community & Journeys Festival International 

for a free poetry workshop with Robyn Bolam, exploring themes of home, hope and journeys. Taking inspiration from poems written by members of Portsmouth’s refugee and asylum-seeking community, the workshop is suitable for all levels of experience, whether you’re an award-winning writer or a complete beginner.

The workshop will take place 3pm – 5pm, with a public reading by Robyn Bolam at 5.30pm which workshop participants would be welcome to stay for. There will be an opportunity for poems written during the workshop to be exhibited during Journeys Festival International, 18– 27 October.
Robyn Bolam writes about surviving in difficult circumstances, love and loss, change in the natural world and places and societies. She is originally from Northumberland but now lives and works in Hampshire and is the Hampshire Poet.Community Conversations is a project which explores how poetry can facilitate conversations across communities. A selection of poems written by members of the refugee and asylum-seeking community will be touring to libraries around Portsmouth until September 2019.

Sunday 9th June


Upstairs at the John Harvey Tavern, Bear Yard, Cliffe High Street, Lewes, BN7 2AN

Sunday, 9th June, 4.30-6pm

Enjoy a delightful mix of words and music at the launch of Poetry & All That Jazz magazine which brings together leading poets with South Downs writers, plus jazzy guitar from Brighton Festival Award winner Geoff Robb.

The 2019 edition includes great poems from Louis de Bernieres, Frieda Hughes, Penelope Shuttle and many fine writers. Readers include Robyn Bolam and Charlotte Gann. Part of the South Downs Poetry Festival.

Free entrance (with a drink purchased from the Tavern)

I’ll also be reading at this event and am looking forward to reading both exciting new anthologies.

Pale Fire launch poster

April 2019

I’m very happy to have my poem, ‘In the Spaces Between’ – about the work of painter and print-maker Elizabeth Blackadder – included in this special exhibition that runs until 12th June. Thank you to Hampshire Cultural Trust and to students of Ashwood Academy who let me work with them in relation to the exhibition.


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An exhibition celebrating the career of Dame Elizabeth Blackadder opens on 29 March 2019

An exhibition celebrating the long and distinguished career of Dame Elizabeth Blackadder will open at the Willis Museum in Basingstoke on 29 March 2019. Elizabeth Blackadder: From the Artist’s Studio will give art lovers and novices alike a chance to familiarise themselves with Dame Elizabeth’s broad and fascinating work from a career spanning six decades. Aged 87, Blackadder’s long and distinguished career began in the mid-1950s and has continued undimmed into the 21st century.

Blackadder is not a person who has ever courted celebrity, but she is undoubtedly one of Britain’s greatest living artists. She was the first woman to be elected both to the Royal Scottish Academy and the Royal Academy and in 2001, she was given the prestigious title of Her Majesty’s Painter and Limner in Scotland. The exhibition will reveal Blackadder’s diversity and skill as an artist, with a selection which includes some of her early landscapes, several of her perfectly pitched still lifes and some fine examples of her work in watercolour. Her career as a print maker is also represented by a selection of etchings reflecting both her travels in Italy and Japan and also by several prints featuring cats.

“We are receiving works from Elizabeth’s own archive and studio, plus a tapestry kindly loaned to us from the Fleming-Wyfold Art Foundation in London, as well as loans from Glasgow Print Studio. The works are from across her entire career, covering all periods and all mediums. This will be a fantastic exploration of her work,” says Jenny Stevens, Venue Manager at the Willis Museum.

With over 30 works on display at the Willis Museum, which is operated by Hampshire Cultural Trust, Elizabeth Blackadder: From the Artist’s Studio will highlight the breadth of her extensive and distinguished career. Also included in the exhibition is a specially commissioned poem by Robyn Bolam, Hampshire Poet Laureate 2018, written in response to Dame Elizabeth Blackadder’s work.

There will also be the chance to become inspired by Blackadder’s works and to create a masterpiece in a series of workshops with guest artist Isabel Hurley. Family art workshops take place on Tuesday 16 and Wednesday 17 April 2019 and there are also adult masterclasses taking place on Saturday 27 and Tuesday 30 April. For full details and how to book, visit:

Elizabeth Blackadder: From the Artist’s Studio can be seen for free (suggested donation £3) at the Willis Museum, Basingstoke from 29 March- 12 June 2019.

March 2019

Thank you to everyone on the ‘Finding a distinctive voice’ poetry course at West Dean College, Sussex; it was a great pleasure to work with you 29-31st – even losing an hour didn’t diminish your enthusiasm!

December 2018

Review of Anecdotal Evidence by Wendy Cope (Faber, 2018) in The Lake:

November 2018

Copies of the Young Wordsmiths’ poetry anthology, 6.45pm, are available from: for £2!

Good Luck to all these talented young poets in the future. It was a privilege to work with you.

Young Wordsmiths - Gilbert Yates Photography (4 of 61) Photo credit: Gilbert Yates, courtesy of Winchester Poetry Festival

28th November 2018

Thanks to the very warm and welcoming audience of Friends of the Red House Museum and guests at Priory House, Christchurch, who braved the wind and rain to hear about Dorset and Hampshire poets, past and present. May you continue to be inspired and to support poetry in the region.

October 2018

27th October 2018

Ideas for Inspiration Poetry Workshop

Saturday 27th October 2018    10am – 12.30.

Forest Arts, Old Milton Road, New Milton, Hampshire, BH25 6DS

Tel. 01425 619983


This is part of the first New Milton literary festival, ‘Play on Words’

(12 Oct – 4 November)

4th October 2018

Congratulations to all the winners and commended poets in the WinACC Young Poets’ Competition who read their work so well at the prize-giving event at the University of Winchester on 4th October. An anthology of the winning and commended poems, Changing the World, is available from Winchester Poetry Festival.

Congratulations, too, to everyone who took part in the Young Wordsmiths project event for Winchester Poetry Festival on 4th October. Their anthology, 6.45pm, is also available and includes some of the many striking poems they have created since April. These seventeen young poets, from five Hampshire schools, threw themselves into the project with energy and enthusiasm and I’m sure you’ll hear more about them in the future through Winchester Poetry Festival.

Poetry Fest 2018 Highlights - Gilbert Yates Photography (2 of 61)

Photo credit: Gilbert Yates, courtesy of Winchester Poetry Festival

August 2018

This month I’m judging the WinACC (Winchester Action on Climate Change) Young Poets’ Competition and editing a poetry anthology for  the Young Wordsmiths Project. Come along to see and hear the results of the competition at the Performance Gymnasium, University of Winchester, on National Poetry Day, Thursday 4th October at 4pm.

Young Wordsmiths

These talented young poets (and others not pictured) will be performing their work at a special event to launch their anthology. Please support them on 4th October at 6pm-7.30pm, in the Performance Gymnasium, Bowers Building, University of Winchester, Sparkford Road, SO224NR.

July 18th 2018


Poetry Corner is a relatively new venture in Lymington, led by Sarah Standage (in the lemon top). A small group of poetry lovers meet each Wednesday at 10.30 in the Choir Vestry at St Thomas’s Church to read poems they’ve read or written. I enjoyed their company and lively discussion very much.

July 2018

The weekend of 5th-8th July saw another wonderfully successful Lymington Arts Festival, thanks to Helen Talbot, Melvyn Gates and others. It was a pleasure to read with Lydia Fulleylove at St Barbe Museum and Art Gallery on Friday 6th July. Many thanks to everyone who came and to the staff of St Barbe.



June 2018


June 2018 for screens

It was very good to read with the admirable Canadian poet, journalist, editor and non-fiction writer, Mark Abley at the Argo in Montreal, a very special book shop with exceptional managers – thank you Moti! The Argo is the oldest independent Anglophone bookstore in Montreal and is greatly loved.



June 17th 2018

Thanks to Tom Bennett for capturing some special T&G moments at the Hyem launch in Portsmouth – with Denise Bennett and John Haynes

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Broad St, Hampshire, Portsmouth PO1 2ND
7.30-10.00pm / £5.00

Tongues&Grooves hosts the launch of ROBYN BOLAM’S acclaimed new collection, HYEM.
Robyn Bolam, Hampshire Poet 2018, has published four acclaimed poetry volumes, most recently, Hyem: ‘an outstanding collection that gives a sense of replenishment and rejuvenation’ (Jack Little, The Lake). Choosing her poem, ‘Moving On’, for  Guardian poem-of-the-week, Carol Rumens described Hyem as ‘pure belta!’

Also appearing: JC GRIMSHAW

JC GRIMSHAW is a troubadour, a balladeer and a poet. His world class skills as a songwriter and multi-instrumentalist have earned him numerous accolades from many in the industry.
This man reminds us more and more of Nick Cave. Singing from the darkest, blackest, most bluesy corner, he pulls off an impressive show here on various slide and lap guitars.’ (Concerto magazine, 4.5 star rating)

May 22nd 2018

Thank you to Hampshire Cultural Trust and the staff of Alton Library for helping to make ‘Walking into the Picture: a poetry workshop inspired by the work of W.H. Allen’ a special afternoon – and thank you to everyone who took part and created such good poems.

Poetry 1Poetry 2

Chris Taylor

April 22nd 2018

I enjoyed being interviewed by Nick Girdler on his Sunday BBC Radio Solent show, a little after 9.30:

It’s always good to talk about poetry – and Nick plays good music too!

April 2018

Welcome to the Young Wordsmiths of Hampshire, who are about to begin a series of workshops with me for a Winchester Poetry Festival project that will give them the opportunity to perform some of their work at the Festival on National Poetry Day, 4th October. Watch out for details!

March 29th 2018

It was a great pleasure to meet Tessa Ditner and all the dedicated members of Portsmouth Writers’ Hub. Thank you for inviting me along to tell some ‘Stories of Poems’.

Special thanks to Portsmouth-born, Kay Cotton, who came all the way from Normandy and brought me her moving collection of poems, The Key to Number Three (Indigo Dreams, 2018), in memory of the poet, Elizabeth Bewick, who was always an inspiration and a dear friend.



19th March 2018

A big thank you to Julian Stannard for hosting my reading at Winchester University – and to everyone who braved the snow to give me a warm welcome!

March 2018

I really appreciate having my poem, ‘Starving after long rain, the barn owl hunts again’ on the beautifully designed website ‘Words for the Wild’ at:

This is a wonderful place to find poems and short fiction ‘rooted in the countryside’.

February 2018

I’m very happy to have been chosen as ‘Hampshire Poet 2018’ by Hampshire Cultural Trust and look forward to working with young people from five Hampshire schools on the ‘Young Wordsmiths’ project from April, as well as meeting poets and poetry lovers at readings and workshops across Hampshire in the coming months.

For more information, please go to:

If you live in Hampshire or surrounding counties and are on Facebook, you might like to join the Hampshire Poetry Hub for news of poetry events, competitions, writing ideas and discussions:

February 22nd

Poetry & Prose Open Mic Night, Forest Arts

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There was a wonderful variety of lively prose and poetry at New Milton on Thursday night, expertly hosted by Peter Hitchens.

Thank you for the warm welcome – and to Emma Jolly for the photos!

January 2018

Happy New Year!

Thank you to Carol Rumens for choosing my poem, ‘Moving On’ for Guardian Poem of the week:

November 11th 2017

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 New poetry collection, Hyem, was launched in York on Saturday! Thank you to everyone who came.

It was also special to be part of the launch for the anthology, Metamorphic: 21st century poets respond to Ovid, at the National Association of Writers in Education’s 30th conference.


October 2017


It was wonderful to share publication day (26th October) for fourth Bloodaxe poetry collection, Hyem, with lovely relatives from Canada. My cousin, Elsa Bolam, is with me here. Elsa founded Geordie Productions, a touring theatre company based in Montreal. She’s proved that roots can be stretched a very long way – an idea at the heart of Hyem, which will be launched at the NAWE conference in York at 5.45 on Saturday 11th November.

Other launches and readings are in the pipeline for 2018 – in London (Twickenham), Portsmouth (Tongues & Grooves), Chichester and the Isle of Wight.

Many thanks to Neil Astley and the Bloodaxe team.

September 2017


Alison Hill’s fascinating anthology, Fifty Ways to Fly, brought Matt West, Maggie Sawkins, Alison, Stephen Boyce and myself together to read with Denise Bennett and others at the Square Tower Portsmouth for Tongues & Grooves on 17 September – with memorable music by Fly Away Peter. It’s sold in support of the British Women Pilots’ Association:



August 2017

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Many thanks to Paul Armfield (above) for hosting a Ferry Tales farewell at Quay Arts Newport on August 8th – and to Lydia Fulleylove, JC Grimshaw and Dom Prag for another special Ferry Tales evening.

Our anthology has sold out now, but CDs are available!

July 2017

Visit the Ferry Tales Exhibition in the Community Room at Lymington Library, 6th-8th July, and please join us (with guest poet, Maggie Sawkins) on Friday 7th July at 7pm for a lively evening of original music and voices at the United Reformed Church on Lymington High Street. Both events are free.


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April 2017

Please join us if you can as we celebrate our year of ferry trips and poetry and song-writing workshops in Solent ports. A big thank you to both Red Funnel and Wightlink  and to all the ferry passengers who gave us words that turned into poems. Through our Facebook page: Facebook/com: ferrytalesproject others joined in from further away – thank you for your poems and photos too! If you’d like to find out more about the project, please go to:

Thank you, too, to everyone who came to our event on 22nd on the Isle of Wight. It was a wonderful day! If you missed it and you’d like to hear the music and read some poems, thanks to Arts Council England and the National Lottery, our CD and anthology are available through the Ferry Tales website (above).



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March 2017

A very exciting time – singer-songwriters JC Grimshaw and Dom Prag recording the Ferry Tales CD of their own ‘Songs of Sea and Travel’ with some lyrics by participants in Robyn & Dom’s song-writing workshops. Come along to Dimbola Museum & Galleries, Freshwater Bay, Isle of Wight, on Saturday 22nd April to hear them play as we launch the Ferry Tales Exhibition there.


Fifty Ways to Fly

Alison Hill has edited a fascinating anthology, Fifty Ways to Fly, sold in support of the British Women Pilots’ Association (published by Rhythm & Muse). Check out Alison’s website for details. Contributors include Robyn, Stephen Boyce, Ian Duhig, Paul McLoughlin, John Murphy, Rosemary Norman, Maggie Sawkins, Susan Utting and many more.

November 2016

Robyn spreading the word about the Ferry Tales Project at the National Association of Writers in Education Conference in Stratford-on-Avon:


October 2016

Review of The Poems of Basil Bunting, ed. Don Share (Faber, 2016) in The Lake:


FREE Poetry and Song-writing workshops with ROBYN BOLAM and DOM PRAG – for those whose lives have been impacted by illness –

at the Coates Centre, Lymington, Hampshire:

18th & 25th October, 10am-1pm

 to book , call: 01590 677198        


September 2016


Hampshire Cultural Trust Heritage Open Day Poetry Reading

at River Cottage Canteen, Winchester, on 15th September at 7pm with

Isobel Rogers (Hampshire Poet, 2016) Robyn Bolam and Stephen Boyce

(Thanks to painter-poet Hugh Greasley and to former Hampshire poet, Joan McGavin for the photos of this happy event.)dscf0962

July 2016

Lymington Arts Festival

Friday 8 July at 5.30pm Poetry, Painting and Song

Launching the Ferry Tales Project,

poets Robyn Bolam and Lydia Fulleylove will read

from and talk about their work in relation to the

Annual St Barbe Open Exhibition. They will be joined by

acclaimed singer-songwriter, Paul Armfield.

St Barbe Museum & Art Gallery, Lymington.

FREE ENTRY to event. Standard admission charges apply for the exhibition.


Thursday 7 July at 6pm

Robyn will join Cassandra Clark, historical novelist and ‘mistress of the medieval whodunnit’, in ‘Magic, Myth and Mayhem’: on writing history in fiction and poetry

at WATERSTONES, 105-106 High Street, SO41 9AP


 June 2016

Winchester Writers’ Festival

Robyn will run a poetry workshop at the festival on 19th June. For more information see:

The Winchester WritersFestival will take place at the University of Winchester.

April 2016

Two poems, ‘Basil Bunting’s Shadow’ and ‘Between Four and Five o’clock, 10th August 1628, Stockholm Harbour’ published in Two Thirds North, 2016

March 2016

Review of Christopher Reid’s The Curiosities (Faber, 2015)

October 2015

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The Power of Place in poetry, fiction and inspiration at the Isle of Wight Literary Festival.  Cassandra Clark, ‘the mistress of the medieval whodunnit’; acclaimed prize-winning poets Robyn Bolam and Lydia Fulleylove; Wendy K. Harris, author of the popular ‘Undercliff Novels’  set on the Isle of Wight, and multi-talented writer, Brian Hinton, will read from and talk about their work on Friday 16th October at 2.30pm. All have been praised for their ability to convey a powerful sense of place. Between them they will take you from northern Britain down to the Isle of Wight and right across the world. These writers support Dimbola Museum & Galleries, a venue that celebrates the work of photographer Julia Margaret Cameron and artists of today.

September 2015

Review of Clive James’s Sentenced to Life (Picador, 2015)

June 2015

Reading at The English Bookshop, Stockholm, on the day of its re-opening in its new location, Södermannagatan 22


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                                                                 Robyn with Christer Valdeson in his welcoming English Bookshop


Robyn with Paul Schreiber, Senior Editor of the innovative and truly international journal of new writing, Two Thirds North, during a visit to Stockholm this month. Check it out at:


Royal Literary Fund Podcasts

The Royal Literary Fund release a new podcast every week on their website. This week, if you go to:

you can listen to poet Julia Copus interviewing Robyn about her anthology of four hundred years of women’s poetry, Eliza’s Babes (Bloodaxe). Scroll down a little more and you’ll find another podcast by Robyn about Roots, geographical and emotional. This is paired with one by the writer, Kapka Kassabora, on exile.

May 2015

The Power of Place

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Power of Place posterThe Power of Place: writers Robyn Bolam, Cassandra Clark, Lydia Fulleylove, Wendy K. Harris and Brian Hinton will read from and talk about their work at Dimbola Museum and Galleries, Freshwater Bay, Isle of Wight on Thursday 28th May at 5.15pm. Refreshments available before the event. All welcome.

This is a free event but donations to the Julia Margaret Cameron Trust will be appreciated.

Robyn also runs the Royal Literary Fund’s ‘Reading Round’ here and would like to meet anyone interested in joining the group from September. Please contact her via her website:

Historical novelist, Cassandra Clark, ‘the mistress of the medieval whodunnit’, is the author of eight thrilling, carefully researched novels and a skilled evoker of known places, from northern Britain to medieval Europe.

Wendy K. Harris’s ‘’Undercliff Novels’ , set on the Isle of Wight, have been praised for their ‘stunning sense of place’ as well as being compelling narratives which inspire her readers to visit the island she evokes so vividly.

Author of three acclaimed poetry collections published by Bloodaxe Books, Robyn Bolam has been described as ‘a poet of spirit and a poet of place’. Her latest work is concerned with the concept of ‘home’ and links between her native north and the south, where she now lives.

Prize-winning poet, Lydia Fulleylove’s second collection, Estuary, published in October 2014 by Two Ravens Press, tells the story of a year on the estuary of the Western Yar on the Isle of Wight, using poems, diary extracts and visual images from artist Colin Riches.

Poet Brian Hinton is also the author of more than thirty books about literature, music, writers and place. As writer, researcher, curator, editor and actor, he has supported and promoted the arts on the Isle of Wight and elsewhere for many years. He is Chairman and Curator of Dimbola Museum and Galleries.

March 2015

Two of Robyn’s poems (‘Beyond Men’ and ‘Two Springs’) are included in an exciting new sound recording piece, Voices Returning, for the Bloodaxe ‘Poetics of the Archive Project’. This is a celebration of fourteen women poets with north-east connections by Bernadette McAloon and Wendy Smith and you can listen to it at:

The poets are: Frances Horovitz, Fleur Adcock, Anne Stevenson, Jackie Litherland, Robyn Bolam, Jill Maughan, Cynthia Fuller, Ellen Phethean, Katrina Porteous, Gillian Allnutt, Linda France, Julia Darling, Jackie Kay and Colette Bryce.

February 2015

Review of Alison Hill’s Slate Rising (Indigo Dreams Publishing, 2014)

October 2014

9 October at 7.30pm. Guest poet for Wight Words at Quay Arts, Newport, Isle of Wight – with storyteller, Eltjo de Vries, singer-songwriter, Catherine Cameron Martin and much more…

4 October at 4pm. Reading with The Spring Poets (Chris Sparkes, Marianne Barber and John Haynes are pictured here) in St Faith’s Church, Havant, for the Havant Literature Festival.

img090 Havant Literature Festival Spring Poets 006x Havant Literature Festival Spring Poets 005x Havant Literature Festival Spring Poets 004x

2 October at 7.30pm. Reading with Joan McGavin (Hampshire Poet 2014) at Hythe Library for National Poetry Day.

September 2014

12 September at 5.00pm. Reading at Winchester Discovery Centre, Performance Hall with Stephen Boyce, John Haynes, Nick MacKinnon, Joan McGavin, Maggie Sawkins and Julian Stannard for the Winchester Poetry Festival.

August 2014

New poem, ‘Northern Home Front’ in The Arts of Peace, ed. Adrian Blamires & Peter Robinson (Two Rivers Press/English Association)

Review of Deirdre Shanahan’s Recovery Position (Rack Press, 2014)

July 2014

Romsey Poetry Reading July 2014 002 Romsey Poetry Reading July 2014 001

31 July at 7.30pm. Reading at Romsey Library with Stephen Boyce, Joan McGavin and Paul Gardner in the run-up to the Winchester Poetry Festival (September). Stephen’s latest collection, The Sisyphus Dog, was published this Spring and Joan is the 2014 Hampshire Poet and author of Flannelgraphs (2011). Paul’s poetry collection is Now and Then (2005).

May 2014

An article, ‘Eliza’s Babes: using the skills, ideas and lives of women poets from earlier centuries to create new poetry of your own’, published in Writing in Education, issue no.62, Spring 2014, pp.28-31 [ISSN: 1361-8539]

April 2014

The podcast of the Towards the Point programme is now available. Please see the Towards the Point Blog on Express FM’s website for full details.

March 2014

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Recording an interview with James Sandy and Dave Allen for Express FM (93.7) to be broadcast in Towards the Point (a monthly arts programme) on 31st March at 7pm. James and Dave are lively and interesting interviewers. Listen at

Review of John Agard’s Travel Light Travel Dark (Bloodaxe, 2013)

February 2014

More poems inspired by the High Voltage Laboratory on the recently launched Litmus Project website: (See under 2012, the year the project began)

January 2014

New poem in Poetry Review, volume 103:4, Winter 2013, p.54: ‘Winter Solstice at the High Voltage Laboratory’.

November 2013

Sunday 17th November  National Association of Writers in Education Conference at York, Poetry workshop inspired by early women poets (

Tuesday 12th November, 7pm     Reading with Anne-Marie Fyfe at Garrick’s Temple on the Thames, Hampton (Richmond Literature Festival).

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Monday 11th November, 6pm      University of Winchester, Poetry Reading (contact: Joan McGavin)

Saturday 9th November     Tongues & Grooves 10th Anniversary: Portsmouth Poetry  Festival (reading and in conversation with James Sandy, Express FM)

Robyn interview 1 Robyn interview 2

October 2013

Thursday 10th October, 7pm       Poetry Reading with Stephanie Norgate and music by Les Kazoos d’Amour at Lymington  Library.


Thursday 3rd October, 7.30pm   Poetry Reading with Sylvia Oldroyd at Hythe Library.