Celebrating Shakespeare’s Birthday & St. George’s Day – Festival Friends

Celebrating Shakespeare’s Birthday & St. George’s Day


The Frome Festival Five Hundred are holding a social evening  for members at Castellos restaurant in Palmer Street.

We have booked the function room for April 23, where we can enjoy a two course meal followed by a short informal quiz* reflecting the day. The evening will start at 7.00 pm with dinner at  about 7.30pm.  Advance booking is necessary, once you have booked a place, or a table, we will send you a menu from which you can select your two courses, you have to order your meals before April 16 but you pay for it on the day. You can bring a friend, particularly if they can be persuaded to join the 500! Places are limited for the dinner so please book early.

*and possibly,  points mean prizes,


Words at Frome Festival 2015


Words – spoken, written, discussed, performed – in storytelling, books, poems and plays – words in all their guises are represented at the 2015 festival. From Writers in Residence, busy scribbling away in the shops of Frome on July 4th, to a fantastic series of writers’ talks and workshops in the library on the 12th, culminating in the Short Story Competition prize-giving, this year’s programme is bursting with literary gems.

The Frome Writers Collective will be hosting literary workshops and talks throughout the week and you could also try out for the acclaimed Bard of Frome or the Festival Poet Laureate on the 6th.

There’s plenty of drama with a production of MRS SHAKESPEARE at the Silk Mill on July 2-4th by the Frome Drama club and staying on the Anne Hathaway theme, the Festival presents a professional production of THE SECOND BEST BED at the Merlin theatre. There’s also open-air theatre with Nevertheless Productions at the Dissenters’ Cemetery on the 10th and from Miracle Theatre on ECOS at the Merlin on the 7th.

Poetry lovers can head to the Garden Café on Monday 6th,  the Hip Yak Poetry Shak at the Archangel on the 8th or to the Three Swans on both the 9th and 10th to hear Helen Moore and Kate Moore respectively.

On Tuesday 7th Ivan Cooper will give a talk on his book Tibet an Accidental Pilgrimage, which is the Festival Book this year, at the Three Swans. On the 8th Rook Lane will host a talk on ‘Syria Today’ with three acclaimed writers John McHugo, Diana Darke and Peter Clark; then on the 9th local author Alison Clink will be launching her recently published book ‘The Man who Didn’t Go to Newcastle’ at the Three Swans.

Peter Clark and David Lassman present an evening of nostalgia at Rook Lane on the 6th, looking back at the stories of WWll evacuees, and Home in Frome are running a story-makers workshop in connection with their memory quilt on the 7th.  With a Sci-fi event, a forum for script and screenwriters, a talk on writing for children, the Booklovers’ Pub Quiz, and tales from Frome Storytellers and there’s plenty to choose. (See highlighted literary events in the brochure).

Deadline to enter the 2015 Festival and Open Studios approaches

The deadline for event entries in the 2015 Frome Festival is Monday 2nd – If you haven’t run your event by the festival office time there are just a few days left to enter. Please contact us on 01373 453889 or email: office@fromefestival.co.uk. Once your event has been approved we will email you a link to the event submission form with a password.

The Open Studios deadline is also this weekend. Please contact Caroline Walsh-Waring on info@fromeopenstudios.co.uk or call 07587212921





The 2015 Frome Festival Event Form is now ready

If you’d like to put on an event, have run it by the office, have your venue, and £50 standard entry fee ready, please contact us on office@fromefestival.co.uk, for a link to the form and a password.
The deadline to get your event into the Festival brochure is Monday 2nd March.

Please contact the office for information on larger event fees, sponsorship and advertising.

BAFA Honour For FROME FESTIVAL Creative Director

The Frome Festival is celebrating national recognition following the election of its Creative Director, Martin Dimery, to the Executive Board of the British Arts and Science Festivals Association, at their recent annual conference. The Association (BAFA) represents, serves and supports nearly 100 arts festivals throughout the UK. These include most of the country’s best known and long established festivals such asEdinburgh,Brighton, Buxton and the BBC Proms.

Dr. Bob Morris, Chairman of the Frome Festival, was approached to nominate a representative, following its recommendation by the prestigious Canterbury Festival. Only nine arts organisations are represented on the BAFA Executive. Dr. Morris was keen to put forward Martin Dimery, who is now in his eighth year as Director:

“This is an enormous vote of confidence” said Dr. Morris,  “not only in Martin personally, who has brilliantly organised seven Frome Festivals but also in the outcome of all his inspired and inspiring work, which BAFA has described as “a fantastic example of a largely volunteer-run operation which has achieved considerable scale and success.”

The Festival will celebrate its fifteenth year in 2015. In a recent report to the Frome Town Council, Dr. Morris reiterated that despite being described by consultants as “unsustainable” it has survived and flourished regardless of funding cuts from County and District Councils. A recent survey indicated that most town arts festivals fail to last more than three years. Martin Dimery put the survival of the Frome Festival down to the following:

“Frome is an amazingly creative community. More and more performers, writers and artists seem to be moving to the town, and much of our programme is inspired or promoted by many of these individuals. Before the Frome Festival however, the town was establishing itself as an important regional centre for the arts. In the 1970’s the Merlin Theatre opened at Frome College, creating a great public space for touring theatre and concerts, as well as an inspiring resource for students and local drama groups. Then in the 80’s and 90’s we saw the development of the Black Swan Gallery; the saving of the Memorial Theatre by a voluntary group of trustees, and the foundation of the ECOS Amphitheatre next to the Merlin, with its subsequent festivals. The Cheese and Grain hall was then restored by a town council determined to regenerate the Market Place, and Rook Lane Chapel was finally re-opened as a gallery and performance space. Frome was crying out for a festival that would capitalise on all these great facilities. Since the Festival began, we have seen the addition of privately owned spaces for the arts like the Silk Mill and Cooper Hall, which makes Frome the envy of communities ten times the size. Yet, all of these venues, like the Frome Festival,  rely to a large extent on voluntary support. I think Frome is a role model of good practice in the arts despite very limited funding. It is that unique experience I will be taking with me to BAFA meetings and conferences in the future.”

Plans are now under way for the 2015 Frome Festival which will run from Friday 3rd July to Saturday 12th July. www.fromefestival.co.uk


A WELCOME to everyone who enjoys the Frome Festival to come to: THE THREE SWANS, KING ST.on WEDNESDAY OCTOBER 29th at 19.00 (7.00pm). Come and join us for an evening of music from the Fabulous Frukes, a glass of chilled wine and a chat about the festival with Artistic Director Martin Dimery & join in  lively Q&A’s about ‘what next’ as we start to turn The Festival Friends into THE FESTIVAL FIVE HUNDRED. Stand up and be counted.