Manchester City of Literature

English Shared Futures is delighted to announce its collaboration with UNESCO’s Manchester City of Literature Creative Network.

Manchester has a rich literary tradition, as home to some exceptional and high-profile poets, a thriving poetry and spoken word scene, award-winning publishers and writing development agencies and libraries which place writing and community outreach at the heart of their work. This heritage is represented in Manchester’s designation as an UNESCO City of Literature in 2017.

In 2017, Manchester was welcomed into the Creative Cities network as a City of Literature. UNESCO Cities of Literature are awarded the title based on their dedication to pursuing excellence in literature locally and work together to promote new national and international links.

Delegates coming to the conference in July will be able to enjoy a series of events and activities in partnership with members of the network, so check back soon for news on the itinerary on how to register.

Find out more.

Events/Promotions

UNESCO Manchester City of Literature: Libraries and Literature Walking Tour
Following the enormously successful Manchester Festival of Libraries, Manchester UNESCO City of Literature are offering one a Walking Tour covering The Anthony Burgess Foundation, Central Library, and some of the key literary locations in Manchester. This event is FREE for E:SF delegates (by selecting the promo code UNESCO), but registration is required and numbers are very limited.

MEETING POINT IS THE ENTRANCE TO ALL SAINTS SQUARE (directly opposite the main conference entrance at Grosvenor)


Elizabeth Gaskell’s House
A truly hands-on experience that will introduce you to the world of the writer Elizabeth Gaskell and her family through historic period rooms, Victorian style garden, expert guides and changing exhibitions.

FREE entry for ESF delegates on Thursday 7th and Sunday 10th July. 11am-4.30pm (last entry 3pm)
Please pre-book via the link and select either 7 or 10 July.


Multilingual Poets Event


In its continued endeavour to promote the diversity of Manchester’s literature, Manchester City of Literature has appointed an inaugural team of three multilingual poets to produce a series of original works on behalf of the City.

The announcement took place at the Manchester Poetry Library at Manchester Metropolitan University and includes a colleague of the University, Anjum Malik. The City Poet roles carry a civic responsibility, much like conventional Poet Laureate designations, and the appointees will be commissioned to produce five original poems on behalf of the City. Three of these poems will respond to Manchester Day, World Poetry Day and the Festival of Libraries; all of which will be taking place in 2022. The two other commissioned poems will be delivered to respond to other exciting public events, projects and community outreach programmes coordinated by Manchester City of Literature and its partnership network. The poets will also translate other poets’ writing.

As one of these events, English Shared Futures will welcome Anjum with Ali Al-Jamri and Jova Bagioli Reyes in showcasing their commissioned work followed by a discussion of the opportunities and challenges raised by multilingual poetry and translation.

Find this event on Day 2 of the conference’s Academic Programme.


Presentation and Q&A with Manchester City of Literature
Since it was formed in 2019, Manchester City of Literature and its partners have been taking literature off the bookshelf and into the hands and minds of local residents in a variety of ways. This presentation with Ivan Wadeson, Executive Director, and Reece Williams, Community Engagement Manager will feature on the conference programme and cover some of that activity including the Festival of Libraries, book gifting via Read Manchester and community engagement initiatives.

Find this event on Day 2 of the conference’s Academic Programme.