Borders Poets Showcase

Project Date: 26th November, 2013 –

In 2013, CABN began a fruitful partnership with the Abbotsford Trust, to bring contemporary writing into the heart of Sir Walter Scott’s Abbotsford House, by hosting a showcase of contemporary Borders Poets.

An open call for poets to submit work for selection for the showcase went out to poets in the region in September 2013, with a panel from the Scottish Poetry Library having the hard task of whittling the submissions down to 5 poets:

Stuart Delves, Anita John, Laurna Robertson, Julian Colton and Bridget Khursheed.

A packed audience gathered in the Library at Abbotsford House to hear the poets read, with a variety of styles and inspirations. A truly memorable evening, and a fantastic showcase for the high quality writing happening in the Scottish Borders, building on the legacy of Sir Walter Scott.

“It was a great opportunity for literature lovers to get together, be inspired by this beautiful setting, and celebrate the continuing tradition of Borders writing and writers.”  Mary Morrison, CABN Leader

“Before Sir Walter Scott became famous as a novelist, he gained world renown as one of the British Isles’ most well respected poets, and I am sure he would have been delighted, as we are, to welcome today’s poets to the place where he wrote so much of his wonderful work.” Dr Sandra McKenzie, Abbotsford Trust

The success of the event, and subsequent discussions and ideas from the poets themselves led to a further partnership between CABN and the Abbotsford Trust –  Scott’s Treasures – in 2014.  Poet Stuart Delves had been involved in the 26 Treasures project at the National Museum of Scotland, pairing 26 objects in the collection with 26 Scottish writers.   This led to the inspiration behind Scott’s Treasures – using the eclectic collection of objects at Abbotsford House as the impetus for new writing.

This project was initiated by CABN Literature Advocate, Jules Horne and Dr Sandra Mackenzie, Abbotsford Trust, and enabled through a partnership with the Scottish Poetry Library.

© Kevin Greenfield Photography