Winchester Poetry Festival 2021

With the world turned upside down over the past year Winchester Poetry Festival is doing things a little differently in 2021. This year’s festival is stretched over five months with a hybrid of online and real world events accessible to everyone. The festival as a whole will be our biggest event so far featuring an array of wonderful readers and speakers, a wide range of workshops – and our Poet on the High Street community residency.

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Raymond Antrobus

Through June - September we are presenting a series of ‘poetry shots’ – a shot in the arm of stimulating readings, conversations and workshops taking place online. The series includes rising stars such as Jen Hadfield, Raymond Antrobus and from the USA Joyelle Sweeney. This year’s Robert Hutchison lecture given by Professor Will May on the relationship between Sylvia Plath and Stevie Smith features readings by Juliet Stevenson.


In October we plan to be back at Winchester Discovery Centre with a relaxed but enticing
festival weekend that includes familiar events such as Things Being Various featuring
outstanding Irish poet and professor of poetry Paul Muldoon in conversation;
our popular international prize-giving reading, the remarkable poets Liz Berry,
Patience Agbabi and Romalyn Ante; Hampshire Poet Kathryn Bevis,
and Winchester Muse and much more.

To read more about our October live weekend download a leaflet here.


Running alongside all this our Poet on the High Street residency supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund will engage people throughout Winchester in exploring through poetry the hidden heritage of the city, its nooks and crannies, ghost signs and street names – and your memories and stories. Come along and get involved.

Click on the links below for more information, and to book events visit our Ticketsource Box Office.

You can read about our festival poets here, and order their books via Bookshop.org here.

You can read more about our Covid Safety measures for the live weekend here

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Winchester Poetry Festival will use all reasonable efforts to deliver advertised programmes and other activities in accordance with the descriptions set out on the website and in print.

Winchester Poetry Festival reserves the right if necessary:

  • to alter the timetable, location, number of events or method of delivery provided such alterations are reasonable

  • to make reasonable variations to the content and speakers and tutors

  • to cancel events that for whatever reason are no longer possible to present (if for example too few tickets/places are sold to make the event viable).

  • to postpone events and activities if the stated poet/speaker/workshop leader is unwell