Nottingham ready to enter 2016 as a UNESCO City of Literature

Open book

Following Nottingham’s successful bid to become a UNESCO City of Literature, the board behind the bid met to establish their priorities and use the city’s accreditation to develop, nurture and promote Nottingham’s literature in accordance with the ethos of UNESCO.

The board’s first act was to convene a working group to focus on how Nottingham’s writers can be used to tackle poor rates of literacy across the city. The working group will meet early in the New Year to look into ways to link Nottingham’s literature (and its network of high quality writers of all kinds) with improving the city’s literacy rates.

Nottingham City of Literature chair David Belbin says:

‘The idea is not to overlap with other bodies but to draw in their expertise and work out what the City of Literature – and our UNESCO partners – can uniquely do. We also hope to provide work for Nottingham writers and commission or support research that will increase the effectiveness of the work those writers will do in schools and elsewhere”.

The City of Literature bid was made possible by a partnership of organisations: the Arts Council, two universities, the city council, Nottingham Playhouse and many groups connected with Creative Writing across the city. Nottingham City of Literature will actively look into further partnerships to develop programmes while remaining fully inclusive.

UNESCO’s core aim; to develop relationships between nations so that ‘[…] peace must be established on the basis of humanity’s moral and intellectual solidarity’ will be put into practice with the continued building of relationships with our fellow cities in the UNESCO Creative City Network, particularly Cities of Literature.

Congratulations and a copy of the Candlestick pamphlet Ten Poems About Nottingham have been sent to all other Cities of Literature. Nottingham City of Literature has also started conversations with other UNESCO creative cities to share best practice, learn from each other and facilitate future joint cross-cultural programmes.