Gathering Glenrothes’ Stories

Writer and TV historian Daniel Gray is leading our ongoing ReimagiNation residency in Glenrothes, which sees him work with local teenagers and adults to distil their tales of life in the town across its seven decades of existence, and what they think the future might hold for Fife’s New Town. Here he shares his thoughts so far. Under Fife, black …

Is this your Glenrothes?

We’ve been asking past and present residents of Glenrothes to share their feelings on the town and their lives in it, as well as their hopes and fears for the future, as we prepare to head to Fife for the next leg of our ReimagiNation tour of Scotland’s New Towns. Read on below for a selection of their responses so …

Tell us about Glenrothes

Glenrothes was designated as Scotland’s second post-war New Town in 1948, and in the spring of 2018 we’ll be marking this 70th anniversary by taking our ReimagiNation tour to the town, culminating in a festival in May. Unusually among the New Towns, Glenrothes was not designed as an overspill site for Glasgow, but as a development to house workers at …

On the road in August

Our Booked! programme in August was the biggest we have delivered yet. Making the most of the fantastic authors who join us in Edinburgh for the Book Festival, we toured to three towns and cities with mini-Festivals, took writers to the Hebrides to launch a fascinating new intercontinental partnership, and visited three Scottish prisons for five events, including two with …

The Book Fest on Tour

In a previous post on this blog, historian and writer Daniel Gray said he has found that Scotland ‘oozes stories’. Booked!, the travelling programme of the Edinburgh International Book Festival, intends to uncover them. With the support of fantastic local partners, the help of writers from around the world and, of course, the enthusiasm of audiences new and old, Booked! …

Unbound in Irvine

Books might not make you think loud and lively, but Unbound is just that — a thrilling cabaret-style event with live music, hilarious and haunting readings from authors often showing new sides to their work, and a bar. And it’s completely free to attend! Taking place nightly at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, we’re excited to bring the same wild, …

Unbound in East Kilbride

Books might not make you think loud and lively, but Unbound is just that — a thrilling cabaret-style event with live music, hilarious and haunting readings from authors often showing new sides to their work, and a bar. And it’s completely free to attend! Taking place nightly at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, we’re excited to bring the same wild, …

ReimagiNation Rolls On

The Book Festival’s ReimagiNation tour of Scotland’s five New Towns continues in August as we head to two fascinating areas in the west of Scotland, each with their own distinct character and history. We pop up in East Kilbride, Scotland’s original New Town, between Saturday 19 and Monday 21 August, before winding up our summer activity with a visit to …

Fresh Tales from the Town for Tomorrow

A residency project which formed the backbone of ReimagiNation: Cumbernauld challenged pupils at four local primary schools to invent new tales of the town which can stand alongside the ‘official’ and too often negative story embedded in the public imagination. After sessions with theatre maker Ishbel McFarlane and weekly meetings with childrens’ author Mike Nicholson, the results are more imaginative, …

Reflecting on ReimagiNation: Cumbernauld

Our weekend Festival in the New Town of Cumbernauld came to a close on Sunday with an impassioned, energetic and galvanising debate on the past, present and future of the town in which local residents had a chance to share their views with panellists Diane Watters, Kirkland Ciccone, Adam Kaasa and chairperson Richard Holloway. Topics covered ranged from the necessity …

Chris Leslie: A Disappearing City?

Award-winning Glaswegian photographer and filmmaker Chris Leslie embarked on a project to document the changing face of Glasgow in 2014, capturing a city in the throes of another transformation, like that which led to the creation of the Scottish New Towns 70 years ago – but what might this mean for the city’s people? Here he shares an outline of …

Boundless Talents

Books might not make you think loud and lively, but Unbound is just that — a thrilling cabaret-style event with live music, hilarious and haunting readings from authors often showing new sides to their work, and a bar. And it’s completely free to attend! Taking place nightly at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, we’re excited to bring the same wild, …

David Bishop: Dredd Dystopias

David Bishop is a writer of novels, screenplays, graphic novels and non-fiction. A former editor of British science fiction anthology 2000AD, he is the co-writer of that comic’s unfiltered history, Thrill-Power Overload: 2000AD – The First Forty Years. He teaches on the genre-focused Creative Writing MA at Edinburgh Napier University, including the world’s first postgraduate module on writing the scripts …

Diane Watters: New Town, My Town

Diane M Watters is an architectural historian. A specialist in nineteenth and twentieth century architecture and conservation in Scotland, she has recently authored St Peter’s Seminary, Cardross: Birth Death and Renewal (HES, 2016), and co-authored a guide to Cumbernauld (with Miles Glendinning) as part of Buildings of Scotland architectural guidebook series to Lanarkshire and Renfrewshire (Yale University Press, 2016). She …

Festival Programme Unveiled

Last week we launched the programme for a new Festival, ReimagiNation: Cumbernauld, which takes place from Friday 19 to Sunday 21 May 2017. Writers, artists, musicians and poets including Liz Lochhead, Denise Mina, Jenny Colgan and Graeme Macrae Burnet will join audiences in celebrating science fiction, crime writing, poetry, football and the stories of Cumbernauld’s residents. The programme for ReimagiNation: …

Moving Pictures, Hidden Clocks

Daniel Gray continues his exploration of life in Cumbernauld past, present and future. Here, he finds out what signs and symbols hold meaning for local residents, and gets an insight into what they feel is lacked and what is loved in the town. Beyond the plastic cones is the clock. It came from St Enoch Station, following the many Glasgow …

Fresh Plans

Ishbel McFarlane has performed her new interactive theatre experience with groups of young and old residents of Cumbernauld. Here, she shares some insights in to the towns each group built during the show and highlights the issues, debates and common interests which came to light during each session. Crudville. Supercity. Clintown. Jefflandia. Knewtown. Pitsville. Shaun Junior. Paxtoun. Jjam. Dragon City. These are some of the names that were selected …

Stories Under the Surface

Mike Nicholson has been working with pupils in Kildrum, Carbrain, St Mary’s and St Margaret of Scotland Primary Schools in Cumbernauld. Here he shares his initial reactions to the sessions with the kids and teases what stories might emerge from the sessions. Four schools visited, eight sessions completed and the first stages of the ReimagiNation: Cumbernauld schools’ writing project are …

Green Coloured Pencils

Writer and historian Daniel Gray is working with CACE Older People Active Lives service users as part of our ReimagiNation creative residency. Below he shares some thoughts on the town from his first visit to the town. Those who first drew what would become Cumbernauld did so with plenty of green pencils. For each house, a garden; for each towerblock, …

ReimagiNation: Cumbernauld

This week we formally announced our next major Booked! project — ReimagiNation: Cumbernauld. You may have read our previous posts introducing Mike Nicholson, Daniel Gray and Ishbel McFarlane, who are leading creative residency sessions with pupils and pensioners in the town already. Find out more about the project as a whole in a news piece published on edbookfest.co.uk by following …