Poems in Waiting Rooms – Winchester and Basingstoke NHS hospitals
What do you expect to read on a notice board in a hospital waiting area?
Probably not a poem by a celebrated poet, but that’s exactly what you will find in the waiting rooms of the Basingstoke & North Hampshire Hospital and the Royal Hampshire County Hospital in Winchester in the run up to our next festival. In a joint project with the Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust we have collaborated to bring poetry into hospitals because it is now well recognised that poetry can provide support and comfort, as well as distraction, in a healing environment.
Poets taking part in the project include Stephen Boyce, Jane Draycott, Sasha Dugdale, Ian Duhig, Joan McGavin (Hampshire Poet 2014), Stephanie Norgate, Bernard O’Donoghue and Deryn Rees-Jones. They all approached their contribution differently, with two writing directly about hospital experiences but most invite us to reflect.