Dylan, my Dylan.

November 8, 2014

So the Dylan Thomas in Fitzrovia Festival is now over.  Although only really on the periphery of the organisation it's been a part of my life and certainly large in my thoughts for most of this year.  
Pub crawl walks were part of Griff Rhys Jones' original thinking for the festival which he conceived with Dylan's granddaughter, Hannah Ellis and actor Jason Morrell.  It became far more than a tour of Dylan Thomas' Fitzrovia Pubs of course. And I have to say the final, fantastic Gala Performance on the South Bank was very emotional.  I was hugely embarrassed until I looked round and saw the festival director, Jason Morrell, in floods of tears!  I'm sure he won't mind me 'outing' him this way.

I'm not sure why I was so moved.  I think it's perhaps because this festival and the research for the scripts I was working on have bought me much, much closer to Dylan.  As a kid in Birmingham we spent every summer in Wales, but poetry was never a big deal on our council estate.  But it's also Fitzrovia.  From the moment I first sat in The Fitzroy Tavern - I was at Uni for the first time at the age of 50 but still needed cheap beer - and came up with the notion of our London Literary Pub Crawl, I had a special feeling about Fitzrovia. It really is still a remarkable village, just a few hundred yards from Oxford Street, one of the busiest shopping streets in the world.  Soho's more refined, sophisticated sister.  

I gatecrashed the launch party of the festival!  David from the Wheatsheaf suggested I should go and gave me his ticket.  But I've met some lovely and truly remarkable people -  Rebecca Hossack- her gallery hosted the launch party - Griff, Jason, Rebecca, Trefor (Dylan's lovely son-in-law), writer Hilly Janes, Simon Green, the Gala organiser,  the remarkably talented Tom Hollander, Ralph McTell, Guy Masterson, all the actors.  It's been remarkable.  I've stood on the shoulders of giants and realised we all have a passion for the same thing; a young, desperately talented welsh wordsmith who seized every day and did not go gentle into that good night.

If you come on our pub crawl, you'll feel closer to Dylan too, I hope.  But a hundred years after his birth, I sat damp-eyed in the Queen Elizabeth Hall on the Southbank of London and felt I knew Dylan well enough to think he'd have loved it. In a strange way I'm motivated to carry that feeling on too. I don't want to leave Dylan and all the other literary giants that stalked the streets of London often with nothing but talent and aspiration.

The Centenary Festival may be over, but even though we continue with our Literary Tavern Tours, sharing the lives of writers, I have some big plans for 2015!  Not a massive festival, but something I hope Dylan might appreciate.  Watch this space!  (Or better still, sign up for our FREE occasional Newsletter!)



National UK Poetry Day, by our writer and producer, Nick!

October 2, 2014

Thursday, 2 October 2014

National Poetry Day - have a go!

I've been spending a lot of time recently with the poetry of Dylan Thomas and numerous writers for the London Literary Pub Crawl and the forthcoming Dylan Thomas in Fitzrovia Weekend in London. More about that later.  But in spite of the genius of Thomas, Heany and dozens of others, I've found I quite like writing poetry.  I've no idea of technical form or how to do it or even why I like writing it, but it's an interesting way of encapsu...

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Maverick's Summer Newsletter - Our First E-Book!

August 22, 2014

(I know... Maddie says a newsletter a month and the last one was June. But I've been busy. And now we have Katie. More about her next time!)

Norman The Brummie, Fox Hunting in Kingstanding and Lest We Forget.


What a great summer it's been so far! Although Hyde Park was starting to resemble Australia. The grass had turned yellow and parched. But we're loving the hot weather. And we know it ain't gonna last.  

100 years ago it was also an unusua
l summer. We declared war on...

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London Writers and Poverty. How the Lit Pub Crawl started. Part One

August 15, 2014
It's me birthday!  Thanks!  Feel free to send cards. Or cash... :-)

Birthdays are often a time for reflection.  When I first got the idea for the London Literary Pub Crawl, it was because I was taking my M.A. and I was flat broke.  In spite of never having received a grant for education, for reasons known only to the Education Dept I had to fund everything myself.  It was tough - not only the fees, but living in one of the most expensive cities in the world.  But I don't think we'd have done t...
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July 20, 2014
So the world cup is over.  But here in London, things are still buzzing!  The weather has been fantastic and looks like staying so. And we've been nominated as one of the Top Ten Cultural things to do in London! That's fantastic.  So if you are thinking about visiting London this year, come and see us. We've been somewhat overwhelmed by demand and so we're training up some new actors and we've added extra dates.  We're looking at a new box office system too.  At the moment director Katie and ...
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About Me

Nick Hennegan Hello. I started the London Literary Pub Crawl and most of the blogs on here will be by me. I've always written but my first theatrical success was an adaptation of Shakespeare's 'Henry V'. I founded Maverick Theatre in 1994. This pub crawl is really more a promenade theatre performance than a tour and I'm running it with Katie Merritt, who came on board to direct in 2014 and a bunch of enthusiastic local actors and writers. I love sharing my passion for the area and the artists. I also present a radio show on Resonance 104.4fm - London's Arts Station. It's called 'Literary London' and is on Fridays at 7pm (and repeated Weds at 7am.) If you haven't visited us in London yet, I hope you'll come soon. And feel free to leave comments or email me at nick @ LiteraryLondon.co - I reply to them all and I love to hear from you.
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