BACK IN TUEBINGEN IN NOVEMBER FOR TUEBINGEN/DURHAM 30TH ANNIVERSARY ANTHOLOGY LAUNCH

BACK IN TUEBINGEN IN NOVEMBER FOR TUEBINGEN/DURHAM 30TH ANNIVERSARY ANTHOLOGY LAUNCH

26.1.11

AWARD WINNING GORDON



The winner of this year's Northern Voices Award is Gordon Frank Phillips. It was presented to Gordon at a special event, including a Thomas Spence book launch, in Newcastle's Red House on Burns Night 25th January in the presence of the Sheriff of Newcastle, with readings from Gordon and others including Katrina Porteous, Paul Summers, Dr Keith Armstrong, Trevor Leonard, Brian Hall, Catherine Graham, Robert Lonsdale, Dominic Windram, Trevor Teasdel, Dave Alton with Ann Sessoms (pipes) and songs from Gary Miller.
Gordon Phillips has been a writer ever since he came second in a National Schools Association Poetry Competition when he lived in St Albans. He could have gone into the print trade like his father but ‘he was never any good with his hands’. He was educated at Newcastle University where he specialised in writing, memory and culture. Over the years he has written articles, book and theatre reviews for various magazines including Education Review, The Good Book Guide and Theatre. His poems and fiction have been published nationally and internationally, in particular, Australia and the USA, in school textbooks and anthologies like New Angles by Oxford University Press and Enjoying English by Macmillan. His other work has been as a librettist and lyricist, writing King Taor, a cantata for Gateshead Schools, Five Songs in Wansbeck Settings for a 20000 Voices project in Northumberland and writing some of the text as part of Five Operas, a multi-media project for schoolchildren in Essex. At the moment, he is busy writing a folksong cycle, The Square and Compass about St Mary's Island in North Tyneside and a satire The Bull and Bear Song Cycle with a North American composer. When he is not involved in creative projects he is tutoring in Creative Writing, Literature and running a Writers’ Workshop.

Other winners of the award have been William Martin, Alan C. Brown, Katrina Porteous, Catherine Graham, Gordon Hodgeon, Paul Summers and Trevor Teasdel.


More information from Northern Voices tel 0191 2529531


Aye! it was a good beer-swilling-whisky-totting night. Burns would have been proud.


Cheers!

Gordon



We had a great night thanks very much. Will you let us know when there is anything else going on please?

Heather

Many thanks for inviting us all up, we all thoroughly enjoyed the night, it is always great to meet up with you and hopefully we will always continue to do so, we all thought the poetry was " whizzo " encased in a very atmospheric venue, so give yourself a big pat on the back for organising last night Keith, I thought " Geoff " the Sheriff of Newcastle got really involved in the "do " and made a smashing contribution for a non - poeter, I hope we can do this again sometime soon Keith and I look forward to meeting up again, until when, take care old friend and long may you continue to write such tremendous poetry, very best Regards Robert.

Many thanks for inviting me to join you all this evening - I had the loveliest time.

Good poetry, good music and lovely people.

I'll look forward to the next event!

All good wishes
Catherine x


a great night and great contributions, varied combination made it such. well done, Keith, for pulling everybody together.

Bry

ps Burns would have loved it.



REPRINT FROM THE THOMAS SPENCE TRUST


THE HIVE OF LIBERTY


THE LIFE & WORK OF THOMAS SPENCE (1750-1814)


Edited by Keith Armstrong, with an introduction by Professor Joan Beal and a new essay by Professor Malcolm Chase


Published with the support of Awards For All and the Lipman-Miliband Trust


Soon after Spence moved to London, Thomas Bewick’s brother John wrote home that Spence was ‘as full of his Coally Tyne Poetry as ever’.


This reprint is a celebration of that noted pioneer of people’s rights, pampleteeer and poet Thomas Spence, born on Newcastle’s Quayside in turbulent times.

Spence served in his father’s netmaking trade from the age of ten but went on later to be a teacher at Haydon Bridge Free Grammar School and at St. Ann’s Church in Byker under the City Corporation. In 1775, he read his famous lecture on the right to property in land to the Newcastle Philosophical Society, who voted his expulsion at their next meeting. He claimed to have invented the phrase ‘The Rights of Man’ and chalked it in the caves at Marsden Rocks in South Shields in honour of the working-class hero ‘Blaster Jack’ who lived there.

Spence even came to blows with famed Tyneside wood-engraver Thomas Bewick (to whom a memorial has been recently established on the streets of Newcastle) over a political issue, and was thrashed with cudgels for his trouble.

From 1792, having moved to London, he took part in radical agitations, particularly against the war with France. He was arrested several times for selling his own and other seditious books and was imprisoned for six months without trial in 1794, and sentenced to three years for his Restorer of Society to its Natural State in 1801. Whilst politicians such as Edmund Burke saw the mass of people as the ‘Swinish Multitude’, Spence saw creative potential in everybody and broadcast his ideas in the periodical Pigs’ Meat.

He had a stall in London’s Chancery Lane, where he sold books and saloup, and later set up a small shop called The Hive of Liberty in Holborn.

He died in poverty ‘leaving nothing to his friends but an injunction to promote his Plan and the remembrance of his inflexible integrity’.


The Thomas Spence Trust has successfully campaigned for a commemorative plaque on the Quayside in Newcastle. It was unveiled on 21st June 2010, Spence's 260th birthday, with a number of talks, displays and events coinciding with it.


Newcastle City Council has endorsed the Trust and Commissions North allocated £1000 as a seeding grant.


PRICE £5 ISBN 978-1-871536-16-2

ORDERS (ADD £2 POSTAGE PER COPY) TO: THE THOMAS SPENCE TRUST,

93 WOODBURN SQUARE, WHITLEY LODGE, WHITLEY BAY, TYNE & WEAR NE26 3JD, ENGLAND. TEL 0191 2529531.






THE HIVE OF LIBERTY

(AFTER THE NAME OF THOMAS SPENCE’S BOOKSHOP AT 8 LITTLE TURNSTILE, HOLBORN)


I am a small and humble man,
my body frail and broken.
I strive to do the best I can.
I spend my life on tokens.

I traipse through Holborn all alone,
hawking crazy notions.
I am the lonely people’s friend.
I live on schemes and potions.

For, in my heart and in my mind,
ideas swarm right through me.
Yes, in this Hive of Liberty,
my words just flow ike wine,
my words just flow like wine.

I am a teeming worker bee.
My dignity is working.
My restless thoughts swell like the sea.
My fantasies I’m stoking.

There is a rebel inside me,
a sting about to strike.
I hawk my works around the street.
I put the world to rights.

For, in my heart and in my mind,
ideas swarm right through me.
Yes, in this Hive of Liberty,
my words just flow like wine,
my words just flow like wine.




KEITH ARMSTRONG

the jingling geordie

My photo
whitley bay, tyne and wear, United Kingdom
poet and raconteur