John Clare Society website

to promote a wider and deeper knowledge of the poet, John Clare

Festival 2022

The Importance of Tradition (Friday 15th to Sunday 17th July 2022)


We are hoping to hold the Festival this year in Helpston, near Peterborough (the birthplace of John Clare) with the Midsummer Cushion Ceremony on Friday 15 July and the main Festival and AGM on Saturday 16 July. There will be a church service on Sunday 17 July.   The theme for the Festival will be The Importance of Tradition.  Each year the children from the John Clare Primary School take part in a poetry competition on our theme and it will be interesting to see what they make of Tradition! 

We are very fortunate to have Professor John Goodridge as our keynote speaker. He has written extensively on tradition and we look forward to hearing him.  There will be the usual stalls, refreshments in the Village Hall and Bluebell, and folk dancing, village walks with poetry reading in the church.  Our concert this year will be given by Innocent Hare, a small group of folk singers who promise us a varied range of John Clare’s tunes and songs.

An extra event this year will be a Ghost Walk around Helpston which should be interesting!

So, fingers crossed, we hope to go ahead for 2022 – please ‘pencil’ the dates in your diary and we look forward to welcoming you.  Further details will be available in the next Newsletter and on the website.

Sue Holgate – Festival Co-ordinator.