The Hospital - Ben Barton

‘The Hospital’ book launch and signing

Sun 18 Nov, 06:00pm - 08:00pm / Steep Street Coffee House

Folkestone poet and filmmaker, Ben Barton, will be launching his new book at the beautiful Steep Street Coffee House. 

All are welcome to join for a reading, book signing over prosecco (or coffee!), plus, readings from other Fokestone poets and an open mic session, hosted by the incomparable Gary Studley.

Entry to the event is free.

Click here for more info

Meet the author: John M Taylor

Tue 20 Nov, 05:00pm - 06:00pm / 18-24 The Old High Street

John will talk about the seven year process of researching and writing his latest novel, I Will Find You, as well as growing up in a fenland village and living as a 'professional nomad' in 20 countries.

Folkestone Writers Short Story Competiton

Wed 21 Nov, 03:00pm /

Folkestone Writers return with their annual Short Story Competition for stories of 1500 to 2000 words. No particular theme is specified but stories should appeal to an intelligent adult readership.

The winning stories and approximately a dozen others, will be published in The Folkestone 2019 Anthology. Readings of the winning stories and a prize giving will take place on Wednesday 21 November at 3pm at Sunflower House, 45 Foord Road, Folkestone. This event is free to attend. 

The award for first prize is £100 and for second prize £50. 

Stories must be the author’s own original work, as yet unpublished and not submitted elsewhere.

The deadline for entries is Wednesday 31 October. For more information, rules and submission details please click here


Meet the author: Marolyn Burgoyne

Thu 22 Nov, 05:00pm - 06:00pm / Steep Street Coffee House

Marolyn reveals her motivations for writing her debut novel Chip Control and discusses the book's themes of autism, trust, friendship, karma and control, as well has her own theories on autism and fate. 

Poets’ Corner

Thu 22 Nov, 07:30pm / The Troubador,

The Troubadour of Kent micropub

61 Tontine Street, Folkestone

CT20 1JR, 07930 542441

Folkestone Poets’ Corner places poetry centre stage with a poetic celebration of books to mark this year’s book festival.

The evening will start with performances by the members of Poets’ Corner - Dave Horn, Faith Warn and Anthony White. These are followed by an ‘open mic’ session. You are very welcome to read your own work or a favourite poem, ideally on the theme of books, writers or reading. Finally, you’re invited to join in reading a community poem.

Poets’ Corner regularly takes poetry into the community with street performances and readings at cafes and bars in the Creative Quarter.

Click here for more info



Phil Vasili

The life and legacy of Walter Tull, 1888-1918: reluctant hero?

Sat 24 Nov, 04:00pm - 06:00pm / Folkestone Museum

As part of the Walter Tull exhibition at Folketone Museum, author, Phil Vasili discusses the new edition of his book Walter Tull, 1888-1918, Footballer and Officer at 4pm on Saturday 24 November. Vasili will explore the key episodes in Tull's life; why his achievements were forgotten for so long and the competing narratives attempting to define his legacy.

One of Britain’s first Black infantry officers, Walter Tull was also a respected footballer. He led white troops into battle on the Western and Italian fronts at a time when Army regulations and Military Law forbade ‘non-Europeans’ from becoming combat officers. Recommended for a Military Cross – that was never awarded – for his bravery and leadership in Italy, he died at the second Battle of the Somme on 25 March 1918. Private T. Billingham risked his life in attempting to retrieve Tull’s body for burial.

We can all relate to Walter Tull. His struggle is our struggle; his turmoil becomes our responsibility; we empathise with his troubles. His heroism in making the ultimate sacrifice touches us all. Without the Tulls of this world populating our history, what would our lives be like now? Yet, in 21st century Britain, never has there been a greater need for such role models, people who transcend differences of colour, class, religion, gender and nationality with a defined moral compass and an indefatigable determination. Walter Tull made the impossible possible. He is a unique 20th century role model that embodies our 21st century multi-cultural society.

Walter Tull, 1888-1918, Footballer and Officer attempts to contextualise Tull by discussing his life and times. It explores his journey as a person of mixed heritage in a predominantly White Imperial Britain, from his humble but emotionally secure early childhood in Folkestone to the carnage of the First World War - via an orphanage and a career in professional football - where he saw action as one of Britain’s first Black officers.

Phil Vasili first came across Walter Tull when his children were at primary school. He’s now privileged to be a grandfather of six as the second edition of the Tull biography is published. What began as academic research evolved into a project that now has a much wider objective than rediscovering a lost and forgotten reluctant hero. The Military Cross campaign, taken up by many groups and individuals but started in Northampton in 2006, to have Tull’s medal posthumously awarded has acquired symbolic significance: to apologise for past injustices suffered by soldiers of colour in the British Army as a consequence of institutional racism; and to recognise the full extent of their contribution to the British Expeditionary Force during the First World War. 


Tickets: £5, available to buy here

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