Centre for Place Writing

Events in Place Writing

Rewriting the North

The Portico Library and the Centre for Place Writing at Manchester Metropolitan University have come together to organise ‘Rewriting the North’: a series of events celebrating writers and writing connected with the North of England. In each event, two leading writers will read from their work and will discuss the role that place plays in their creative practice. ‘Rewriting the North’, then, will explore the relationship between writing and place across a range of forms and genres. By extension, it will celebrate how such writers are rewriters are reimagining the North of England.


Jean Sprackland and Jacob Polley discuss

Writing, Place and Memory

Date: Thursday 30th May 2019


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In the first event of this new series, Jean and Jacob will explore the role that place and memory play in their evocations of the landscapes – both real and imagined – of the North of England. Jean Sprackland is a poet and writer.The winner of the Costa Poetry Award in 2008, Jean’s poetry books have also been shortlisted for the Forward Prize, the T S Eliot Prize and the Whitbread Award. The Chair of the Poetry Archive, Jean is Professor of Creative Writing at Manchester Metropolitan University. Born in Cumbria, Jacob Polley is the author of four acclaimed poetry collections, The BrinkLittle GodsThe Havocs and Jackself which won the 2016 T S Eliot Prize. His debut novel, Talk of the Town (2009), set in and around the border city of Carlisle, won a Somerset Maugham Award. Jacob is now based in the north-east of England where he is Professor of Creative Writing at Newcastle University.



Writing Place: Creative Critical Conversations

Writing Place: Creative-Critical Conversations’ is a series of six public events organised by the new Centre for Place Writing. In each event, a Manchester Met researcher will be paired with an artist or academic from outside the University to introduce their work and to discuss the relationship between creative and critical approaches to place. Ideas and issues that will be explored during the series include the power and problems of mapping, the representation of post-industrial geographies, and the relationship between writing and music.

For further information about further ‘Writing Place’ events, and the new Centre for Place Writing at Manchester Met, please contact Dr David Cooper (Senior Lecturer in English):

0161 247 5409

d.cooper@mmu.ac.uk / @DrDavidCooper




The Hybridity of Place Writing with Ceri Morgan and Nikolai Duffy

Date: Thursday 7th February 2019


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Ceri Morgan is a Senior Lecturer in English at Keele University where her research focuses on literary geographies in Québec fiction, place-writing, walking studies, and geohumanities. Her current projects include a critical-creative book provisionally entitled Dérives montréalaises. Nikolai Duffy is a poet, publisher, and Senior Lecturer in American Literature at Manchester Metropolitan University. His most recent projects include two hybrid place writing books, A Hut on Ludshott Common, and A Boat to Float on the Flood, about Bardsey Island. Ceri and Nikolai will each present new works of place writing and will discuss hybrid writing, creative-critical geographies, and local imaginaries.

Mapping The Jewish East End with Rachel Lichtenstein and Duncan Hay

Date: Thursday 21st March 2019


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Rachel and Duncan will present their ‘Memory Map of the Jewish East End’: a collaborative project – involving three research units at the Bartlett Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis, University College London – producing a new digital resource exploring space, place, and culture. They will also discuss, more broadly, the relationship between creative and analytical approaches to the history of the city.



Writing Place: More than 100 Stories - A Collaboration

Date: Thursday 8th November 2018


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‘Writing Place: Creative-Critical Conversations’ will begin on Thursday, 8 November with ‘More than 100 Stories: A Collaboration’. Sarah Butler (novelist and Lecturer in Creative Writing at Manchester Met) and Nicole Mollett (visual artist) will discuss ‘More than 100 Stories’: a commission from the Creative People & Places Network in which they were asked to creatively evaluate 21 projects across England. Join Sarah and Nicole for an in-conversation event discussing the rewards, and challenges, of: collaboration across art forms; working at the intersection of research and creative practice; making work in direct response to specific people, places and events, and much more.


Date: Thursday 6th December 2018


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Image from Spacial Antropologies by Les Roberts

The second event in the ‘Writing Place: Creative-Critical Conversations’ series will be held on Thursday, 6 December and will focus on ‘Mapping’. Dr Les Roberts (Senior Lecturer in Cultural & Media Studies, University of Liverpool) will introduce his new publication Spatial Anthropology: Excursions in Liminal Space. The book explores a range of spatial methods for thinking about sites across north-west England. Les will be joined by Dr Tina Richardson (Senior Lecturer, Manchester Fashion Institute, Manchester Metropolitan University) who will reflect on the psychogeographic practices brought together in Walking Inside Out: Contemporary British Psychogeography.

Assembly Language: Words-Films-Scores / Amy Cutler & Richard Skelton

Date: Thursday 24th January 2019


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Image courtesy of Amy Cutler

The third event in the series, ‘Assembly Language: Words-Film-Scores’, will be held on Thursday, 24 January 2019.Dr Amy Cutler is a cultural geographer, curator, writer, and film-maker who is currently a Leverhulme Early Career Research Fellow in the Department of Geography at Royal Holloway, University of London.Amy will be joined by Richard Skelton: a writer, artist, and musician who runs – with his partner, Autumn Richardson – Corbel Stone Press. Richard is also completing a PhD in the Manchester Writing School for which he has been awarded a Vice-Chancellor Scholarship. Amy and Richard will present new and recent work before discussing their environmental practices across a range of media.Amy Cutler: https://amycutler.net/about/Richard Skelton: https://north0fhere.wordpress.com/ / https://www.corbelstonepress.com/



Mapping the Midlands: Place, Voice & Class / Lisa Blower & Natalie Burdett

Date: Thursday 9th May 2019


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The sixth and final event in the series, ‘Mapping the Midlands: Place, Voice & Class’, will be held on Thursday, 9 May 2019. Lisa Blower is an award-winning short story writer and novelist who holds a PhD in Creative and Critical Writing from Bangor University. Lisa will be launching her new collection of short stories, It’s Gone Dark Over Bill’s Mother’s, published by Myriad Editions. Lisa will be joined by Natalie Burdett: a poet whose debut pamphlet, Urban Drift (Smith/Doorstop), was selected by Carol Ann Duffy as a Laureate’s Choice in 2018. Natalie is currently studying for a Creative Writing PhD on poetry and urban geography at Manchester Met.





On this page, you will find information about a selection of Place Writing events that have been organised by members of the Centre over the past few years.

In addition to these events, members of the Centre regularly take part in major public events, hosted by other organisations, both in the UK and overseas. 






Place Writing