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19th September 2018

The BBC’s national poetry and spoken word festival is returning to Hull College after a successful event last year.


The majority of performances taking place as part of Contains Strong Language will take place at the college’s city centre site.

All shows will be supported by learners from the college’s technical theatre and live events courses and catering students will provide food and drink for festival performers.

Michelle Swithenbank, principal and CEO of Hull College, said: “As an historic part of Hull, we’re proud of the role we play in the community and our city centre campus makes us an excellent location for festivals like Contains Strong Language.

“Hosting public events like these also give people the opportunity to see some of our facilities and be inspired to discover what they can do by enrolling for one of our courses.

“Importantly, the festival offers our learners the chance to gain valuable experience and shows our commitment to culture which has also seen us support other major events this year, such as Freedom Festival and Humber Street Sesh.”

The festival takes place from 28 September to 30 September and features a mix of live radio broadcasts, TV and film screenings, music, new talent, poetry readings, workshops and more.

Sue Roberts, Creative Director of Contains Strong Language, said: “The inaugural Contains Strong Language was a huge success with audiences and artists last year, so I’m really pleased that we are coming back to Hull in 2018 by popular request.“We’ve got a packed programme filled with new commissions, premieres and developing work, performed by an exciting group of poets local, national and international. We hope there’s something for everyone here.”

Performances at the festival will feature Gruff Rhys, Simon Armitage, Jackie Kay and see special tributes to Spike Milligan (I Told You I Was Ill, featuring Jessica Hynes) and Leonard Cohen, with Kathryn Williams and other renowned musicians.

Sophia Jansson, daughter of the cartoonist Lars Jansson and niece of the famous creator of the Moomins, Tove Jansson, will be in conversation with poet Amanda Dalton.

Also at the heart of Contains Strong Language is The Hull 18 featuring 18 of today’s most diverse and celebrated poets who have been specially commissioned to create new pieces of work for the festival.