The Word Play Wagon lights the Fuse in Walderslade

Jaye Nolan, Festival Director of the Rochester Literature Festival, has been selected by the Kent Baton to open their Sparks Fuse Festival project, One Day Works.


Jaye’s short term residence in the Baton – a vintage silver airstream caravan converted to a mobile art centre – is on Wednesday, June 4th from 11am – 6pm. It will be located outside Permark Post Office in Walderslade Village and its activities will be suitable for all ages and all abilities. No previous experience is needed, just turn up and play around with some words.

The overall title, The Word Play Wagon, reflects the diverse creative writing activities planned, including:

  • Turn over a new leaf: Add a poem, wish or favourite saying to a luggage label leaf you create and hang it on a Poetree.
  •  A Novel Experience: Bring your favourite book and write an original short piece based on its premise.
  • Hint: Writing micro fiction from as little as 10 words
  • Spoofing Medway: Write the local news as it didn’t happen
  • Mystery Collective Poems: Add a line to the one before – it’ll be the only one you can see!
  •  If and Then: A question and answer session with a difference.

With the Rochester LitFest aiming to make literature accessible to more people, Jaye is delighted to be running a free one day workshop dedicated to creative writing, saying: “I’m really looking forward to engaging lots of people in writing activities, and encouraging them to find their voices. Who knows, I might find the next generation of Medway poets!”

One Day Works will host a series of one day experiments throughout Medway during the Fuse Festival and its build up. From urban high streets to country villages, the project will showcase ten of Medway’s finest creative talents across a range of art forms. Along with the The Word Play Wagon, the works include an epic poem, sculptures made from found objects, archival collections, insect inspired costumes, drawings made from thread, an acoustic live music gig and a magic lantern performance.

The Travelling Talesman pitching in Rochester

The Rochester Literature Festival will play host to the Travelling Talesman at the Good Intent, John Street, Rochester on Friday, May 9th.


You might guess from his name that The Travelling Talesman is a storyteller who enjoys taking his stories to new places. With twenty years experience telling myths, legends and folktales, last year he was nominated for “Outstanding Male” in the British Awards For Storytelling Excellence.

In Away with the Fairies, expect a fun evening of gripping yarns as The Talesman recounts stories of Norse Gods, Celtic mysteries, clever girls and Dragon Slayers, medieval mayhem, giants, goblins and Halloween horrors. Originally specialising in Northern European tales, his stories are now drawn from all over the world.

The Travelling Talesman has toured the country from Penzance to York, for feasts, festivals and fun since the early nineties.

Entry is free, although donations would be welcomed to cover our costs. Doors open at 7pm for a 7.30pm start.

To find out more about The Travelling Talesman, please visit

For information on other Rochester Literature Festival events, including their 2014 festival, Mad Bad & Dangerous to Know, please visit or call 07904 643770. A supporters’ club, ‘Friends of the Rochester Literature Festival’ has been set up and details of that can also be found on the website.

The Rochester Literature Festival (RLF) was formed in May 2011 as an information sharer, and held its inaugural event, The Garden Poetry Party in July 2012.

Three more audience building events ‘Unifinished’, the ‘Literary Potlatch’ and another Garden Party followed in October 2012, March 2013 and July 2013 respectively, before the first main festival ‘OtherWorlds, Other Voices’ took place in October 2013.

The RLF is a voluntary group and currently receives no public funding, relying solely on the generosity of its performers, audiences, personal donations and in kind help.

5 Movies and TV Shows Filmed in Medway

1. Les Miserables

Russell popped into Chatham Dockyard a couple of years ago to ride around on his horse for Les Mis.

2. Sherlock Holmes

With all of the crime solving he has to do, we’re not sure where Sherlock gets the time to maintain his six pack but here is a pic for those that appreciate one.

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3. Mr Selfridge

Jeremy Piven (AKA Ari Gold) and the gang spent time in Medway filming Mr Selfridge.

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4. Downton Abbey

The period drama which features an unusual amount of intense stares was partly filmed in Medway.

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5. Most Haunted

Team Acorah brought their presence to Medway for Most Haunted. Check the video above for the results. We’re going to buy Derek some trousers. Some say he is a small but we think he is a medium.

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7 Celebrities that you may see in and Around Medway

1. Jools Holland

Jools Holland is a musician and, amongst other things, is known for presenting the TV show “Later…With Jools Holland”. He lives in the village of Cooling. Whilst presenting the TV show, The Tube, on live TV in the 80s, he uttered the phrase “be there, or be an ungroovey fucker”.

You can browse and buy music by Jools Holland here.

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2. Joe Pasquale

Joe Pasquale is a comedian, actor and TV presenter and is known to live in Higham. He was crowned “King of the Jungle”. He also has a squeaky voice.

You can buy DVDs and Blu Rays featuring Joe Pasquale here.

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3. Zandra Rhodes

Zandra Rhodes was born in Chatham and studied at the Medway College of Art. She comes up with fashion such as this.

You can buy products by Zandra Rhodes here.

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4. Kelly Brook

Kelly Brook was born and raised in Rochester where she went to the Thomas Aveling school. She has been on shows such as The Big Breakfast as you can see here.

You can browse and buy Kelly Brook’s merchandise, such as calendars and DVDs, here.

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5. Lee Ryan

Lee Ryan was born in Chatham and is a former member of the boyband, Blue.

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6. Pete Tong

DJ Pete Tong was born in Dartford and went to King’s School in Rochester. He is probably most famous for the phrase “It’s all gone Pete Tong”.

You can browse and buy music by Pete Tong here.

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7. Charles Dickens

Charles Dickens’ family lived in Chatham and he also lived in Gads Hill Place, Higham. A number of locations in Medway feature in his books. OK, it’s unlikely that you will see him around Medway at the moment 😉

You can browse books and DVDs of Charles Dickens’ work here.

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