"Penned Up" festival launches annual strive to promote Literacy.

In March 2017 Weston College held its first Literary Festival at HMP Erlestoke. Titled "Penned Up" the festival was supported by our partners at the prison, Bath Spa University as well as funding from the Arts Council and a huge amount of work from our Reading Patron David Kendall.

A huge success, the events over the fortnight of the festival served to promote the importance of Literacy through a range of speakers and workshops and demonstrated the outstanding impact of collaborative partnership working in our prison departments. 2018's event is already scheduled with speakers including ex England footballer Tony Adams, Levi Roots and later in the year, Terry Waite. HMP Erlestoke continues to lead the way in promoting Literacy and our exceptional team of peer mentors are central to this - helping learners achieve the Double Gold Reading Ahead Award last year and on target for the same again.



Prisoner Feedback Quotes from Erlestoke Literary Festival “Penned Up”  for the OLASS website content:

“Hearing such an inspirational story was enough to almost make a prison sentence worthwhile. It meant a lot to me to feel so enabled.”

“Very insightful and inspiring. Interesting to meet new people and gain new perspectives.”

“Wow, a great show. I enjoyed it so much more than I thought I would.”

“Very open and honest. A highly driven and positive individual who is living proof that by making good use of education in prison, success can follow on release.”

“Informative and inspiring for future writing endeavours.”

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