Lit Crawl 2017

Lit Crawl

Lit Crawl returns…

For one night only we take over a section of Cheltenham for a fast-paced evening of pop-up events and quirky literary happenings. This is literature done differently. Join us and get drunk on words. All completely FREE.

Created in San Francisco in 2004 and now in Boston, Brooklyn, Portland, Chicago, New Zealand and beyond, Lit Crawl blends a bar crawl with bookish content – a riotous evening of the written and spoken word in some surprising venues around town.

Well, we’re back and can’t wait to see you on October 7th!

Lit Crawl Stops

Join us in record stores, barbershops, bookshops and all manner of cafés, bars and pubs across Cheltenham to sample everything from flash fiction to zine-making, music to comedy, pop-up readings by bestselling authors to furious sets from the most urgent voices in spoken word.

Burning Eye Books

Burning Eye are to Spoken Word what City Lights were to the Beat Generation: indispensable champions of a literary movement that is changing the world of poetry. Founding Editor Clive Birnie hosts three Burning Eye poets who call the west of England home: Sally Jenkinson, Rebecca Tantony and fellow editor Jenn Hart.


The Libertine Barbers

Take a seat in the barber’s chair as staff and students from the University of Gloucestershire deliver flashes of illumination on love and death and life in late modernity.

Food For Thought

Global Footsteps

Black History Month Cheltenham host a showcase of music, food and excerpts from Spoken Word star Rider Shafique. Stop by and fuel up on words and delicious East- African food (by donation) before your night on the Crawl.

It Must Have Been Dark By Then

Pick up headsets from Boston Tea Party
From 5pm until late

It Must Have Been Dark By Then is a book and audio experience that uses a mixture of evocative music, narration and field recording to bring you stories of changing environments. There is no preset route; the software builds a unique map for each person’s experience. Just bring your phone and yourself. We’ll provide headphones and the book. You can download the app below:

iOS     Android

Make Your Own Mini Zine

Scandinavian Coffee Pod
Drop Ins from 6–8pm

Are you feeling creative, angry or just obsessively interested in something? Join members of the Foreplay Cardiff zine collective and have a go at making your very own mini-zine.

One For The Road

The Tavern

A new anthology from smith | doorstop books celebrating the British pub: glass-halffull and last orders poems, it’s-your-roundnext poems, poems so urgent they had to be scribbled on beer mats. Join editor Helen Mort and contributing poets for a literary bar-hop!

Poetry 101

The Wilson

In a thoroughly unconventional course, The Wilson Arts Collective take all the poetry you (probably) hated at school and give it a thorough re-assessment. From classroom classics like Shakespeare and Keats to modern poetic heroes like Carol Ann Duffy and Ke$ha, join the Collective’s re-education programme. No uniform required.

Flashers’ Club

Smokey Joes

Flashers’ Club is an open mic event featuring writers reading flash fiction. No submissions, no genre restrictions. Just bring your story (100-1000 words), sign up on the night and the mic is yours.

Jonny Fluffypunk ** Badlands 6.15–7.15pm

The acclaimed punk poet performs his new show How I Came To Be Where I Never Was – intended for anyone who has ever loved, owned a vinyl record or just been alive.

“Sublime… well-crafted, tender and lifeaffirming.” Fringe Review

She Plucked, She Ate

10 Chapel Arts
Short, rolling performances from 7pm

Enter the sensual world of Paradise Lost with Andrew Bate and experience the fall of Satan and the temptation in the garden through a spoken word and dance reimagining of John Milton’s epic masterpiece.

David Hepworth


The beloved music journo drops by our favourite record store to tell tales from a career at the forefront of rock and asks whether the age of the rock star is over.

Harry Potter Quiz

Boston Tea Party

Think you know your hinkypunks from your hippogriffs? Anna James invites you to prove that your Hogwarts letter just got lost in the post. There’s a chance to score some precious house points if you come donning your house colours or in fancy dress of your favourite characters.

Formal House Takeover

Formal House

Join us in the achingly cool Formal House for a hedonistic mix of music, comedy, spoken word, mouthwatering bottlegreen drinks and just a few surprises along the way…

Level 1

Chloe Foy
Taking inspiration from classical music as much as wider trends within British and American Indie pop, Chloe Foy writes a brand of melodic, home-grown pop that has been likened to Laura Marling and Sharon Van Etten.

‘Stunningly beautiful’ – The Mancunion

Feminism, Poetry And Gin
Feminism, Poetry and Gin are here to hold those pesky romantics to account and give back some control to their nameless muses by way of gin and satire.

Level 2

Who Do We Think We Aren’t?
Riffing off the Festival theme of ‘Who Do We Think We Are?’, Cheltenham Poetry Festival present a cabaret of spoken word exploring our illicit, secret selves. With urban poet JPDL, slam champ Chloe Jacquet, novelist Lania Knight, poet and DJ Dan Cooper, comedy rapper Robin Shaw Hood and comedian and poet Joy Amy Wigman.

The End We Start From
Rolling readings from 9pm
In an apocalyptic near-future, London is flooded just as a new mother’s waters break. Author Megan Hunter reads from her haunting work of motherhood and survival in a very unique setting.

Tessa Coates: Primates and Kate Lister: The C Bomb
Tessa Coates has an absolutely useless degree in Anthropology and some very big questions about how we got here. Fresh from the Edinburgh Fringe she brings excerpts of her debut show which combines character and story-telling with very intense academic research. Which is surely what everyone wants from their comedy.

‘I love Tessa Coates’ (Caitlin Moran)

When the British Board of Film Classification officially ranked swear words in order of offence; c**t came out on top. Whores of Yore founder Kate Lister talks you through the history of the C Bomb and how it came to occupy its current status as the most offensive word in the English language.