Virginia Astley will be reading from her new poetry collection The English River (Bloodaxe) at Dorchester Waterstones on Wednesday 27th June at 11am. Come along and hear more from her beautiful poetic tribute to the river Thames - its places and its people.  Virginia Astley has been a much admired songwriter and musician since the 1980s, known for her engaging lyrics as well as for her melodious style. Now her other two passions take centre stage in this book: poetry and the River Thames. She grew up by the river’s upper reaches, knew the old lock-keepers and was familiar with all aspects of the Thames and its hinterland: both the natural world and the people whose lives are intimately connected with the river. In recent years, she has returned to the Thames, working for a summer as an assistant lock-keeper, and walking its length to record and respond to its landscapes, river life and river folk as a poet and photographer.


Poetry Group member Juliet Lacey has a play opening in London in June.

‘The Long Bones’, is about the last hours of poet Alun Lewis’s life, with flashbacks into his troubled love for two very different women.

Lots of extracts from his poems are included.

Tues 19th June – Sun 1st July (no Monday performances)

This is at the Pentameters Theatre, 28 Heath St, London, NW3 6TE.    

Call the box office for details on 020 7435 3648


Maya Pieris has sent this information to the East Coker Poetry Group:-

I hear it in the deep heart’s core

Gardens and Things That Grow

Poetry Workshop and Reading with Rachel Piercey, Poet and Publisher with the Emma Press

Be inspired by the magic of Littlebredy Walled Garden and find new ways to write about an age old subject.

To include a shared reading of work.

Saturday 16th June  Workshop 12-4.30pm : Shared Reading 5pm-7pm

Littlebredy Walled Garden, Littlebredy, Dorchester, DT2 9HL

£20 for the workshop and reading : £5 for just the reading.


To book a place on the workshop and/or the reading and to submit a poem 

please contact Maya Pieris at or on 01308 485169

The workshop is limited to 10 people, the shared reading to further participants.

The workshop includes light refreshments, the shared reading a glass and nibbles.

Profits to go to Littlebredy Walled Garden



The 13th Annual East Coker Village Quiz was held in the Village Hall on Saturday 10 March. Doors opened at 7.00pm and the first round of questions started at 7.30pm. As usual, Palmer's excellent fish and chips were served at half time. This is a hard-fought annual contest to win the prestigious Cockerel trophy and Diana Turton led the Poetry Group team to victory despite formidable opposition from the other nineteen teams.  The Poetry Group was the clear winner in what was a very enjoyable evening for all those who took part.  The proceeds of the evening will be donated to the charity nominated by last year's winners, who were the 'Early Train' team.