Nottingham Poetry Festival Returns
Friday 26 – Monday 29 May 2023

Want to be at the center of all the action?

The heart of the Nottingham Poetry Festival this year is our Nottingham Poetry Hub situated in Cobden Place. You’ll find us in Sidedoor Studio at the far end of Cobden Chambers, where you can meet our team, take part in fun activities for all ages and learn more about what’s going on for the entire weekend. The Hub and its adjoining cafe Hungry Ghost, who are offering a 20% discount, are alcohol free, so absolutely everyone is welcome, no matter their age (Tommy recommends the Kinder Bueno cake in particular).

Two minutes away, Five Leaves Bookshop are also offering an amazing 15% off for the entire festival weekend (and if poetry books are your thing, our friends Bad Betty Press and Big White Shed have collections from poets new and far, distributed throughout festival venues for you to enjoy whilst you’re visiting – keep your eyes peeled!).

Finally, if you fancy a pint with your poem, our sponsors, Castle Rock Brewery, are offering a 10% discount over the festival period for thirsty poets and festival attendees. Come on down to The Fox and Grapes at Sneinton Market for the NPF launch, Brian Bilston at The Old Cold Store, or Yarn at Theatre Royal for the fantastic, Yomi Sode and GOBS Collective. Quote ‘NPF23’ when ordering your drinks.

For six years, the festival has presented eclectic line-ups of nationally and locally acclaimed poets and performers and this year will be no different. Follow us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook to keep up to date with future performance events, workshops and competitions.

If you would like to get in touch, please email us on

Meet the team

Nat Henderson

Nat Henderson is an artist and arts administrator.

They currently work for Chronic Insanity theatre, having founded the country’s first digital literary department where they work to facilitate the development of local and national writers alike. Their creative practice includes writing poetry and plays, as well as costume and graphic design. When not doing these things, they can be found hosting Chronic Insanity’s Allsorts at Nonsuch Studies – a monthly night of performances where artists of all kinds can gain feedback from their audiences

Cara Thompson

Cara is an award winning writer, activist and creative programmer born and raised in Nottingham.

Passionate about sharing the stories that shape our communities, Cara is an active member of Nottingham’s creative quarter, joining the poetry collective GOBS in 2021, and officially joining the Notts Poetry Fest team as Marketing Assistant in 2022. She’s also very hip and cool.

Ben Macpherson

Ben is one of our festival producers and liaises with venues, artists and shapes the creative thinking behind the festival.

He’s a writer, performer and producer. His practice includes Poetry, Theatre, and comedy for a wide range of audiences. His work is characterised by a sense of playfulness that transcends genre. Ben’s credits include BBC Radio2, Radio 4 Extra and with the Nottingham UNESCO City of Literature. His debut poetry collection is being published by Big White Shed later this year.

Tommy Rosley

Tommy Rosley (aka Tommy Farmyard)

Tommy is an experienced festival and event professional who develops, co-ordinates and produces our programme of performance events, liaising with venues, performers and connecting with international organisations and artists.

He is a director of Hockley Hustle, Young Hustlers and Green Hustle festivals and curates events and projects across the country, most recently developing Newark Festival and setting up Lush Life festival alongside MIMM. He has been an integral part of Nottingham Poetry Festival since its inception and is partial to a nice cup of tea.

Jay Sandhu

Jay is an international selling author, comedian and poet. Punchy, informative and witty, his poetry and comedy focus on race and culture.

He is also a presenter on BBC radio and runs Nott Another events and projects. Alongside working on projects with Lakeside Arts, New Art Exchange and National Justice Museum, he manages to fit in teaching maths part-time at secondary schools across the city.

Laurie Illingworth

Laurie is an active and involved member of Nottingham’s creative scene

Working primarily within music, he coordinates marketing programmes and manages events for festivals, venues, charities and creative organisations across the city. Laurie is working with the team to build our organisational profile, develop our voice and promote our events. He curates our social media content across all platforms.