Apr 15


Sunday 15 April 2018 : Bolton School Music Centre 7.00pm

The Jamil Sheriff Quartet performed the world premiere of Rafe’s Dilemma, commissioned by Live from Worktown as part of its Bill Naughton’s Bolton Season.

  Live from Worktown proudly announced the premiere of this specially commissioned suite, Rafe’s Dilemma, written and performed by leading jazz performer and composer, Jamil Sheriff (pictured)..

 Jamil is now Director of Jazz Composition at Leeds Music School but has fronted bands playing in all the major jazz venues and festivals and as far afield as China. Rafe’s Dilemma takes its inspiration from Naughton’s Spring and Port Wine (1970).

Rafe Crompton, played by James Mason in the film, was a northern working class domestic tyrant, and the film dwells on his relationship with each member of his family, as the 60’s begin to swing.


Sunday 1st June until 30th June  Many people called into the Naughton centre to see Dave Burnham's collection of wry and affectionate caricatures of well known (and fast disappearing) Bolton Land marks.



Mondays 4th, 11th, 18th and 25th June (1-3pm; free, but limited places):

Four creative writing workshop led by Julie McKiernan on the theme of commemoration - of events large and small, personal and global.    

Saturday 9th June (1.30-3.30pm; free):

Professor Bob Snape and Brid Andrews introduced “Spinning Memories” – short performances by students from the University of Bolton School of the Arts which dramatised some of the material in the Worktown archive:            

Sunday 10th June (1-3pm):

                             We presented “A Bit of a Do” – Cabaret in the Afternoon, featuring local singer/songwriter Nat Clare and friends, plus open mic. Compered by Paul Blackburn.

Saturday 16th June (2-3pm)

  Members of Jim Cartwright’s Drama Studio presented short pieces inspired by the work of Bill Naughton.


We put on an end of season celebration with a showing of:


The Family Way

Friday 20 July 2018, 7.30pm – 9.30pm

Bolton Little Theatre

Hanover Street BL1 4TG

Entrance £10 which included a number of give-aways for this night only.

Freely available for each attendee on the night was a copy of the 17 min DVD, 'Bill Naughton: The Bolton Years', a postcard of Dave Burnham's painting 'Night Shift' (pictured), and a hot-off-the-press copy of the graphic fold-out story of Bill Naughton in Bolton.Also available for purchase were:signed and numbered A2 copies of 'Night shift'  on good quality cartridge paper, additional copies of the DVD & postcards as well as the Naughton biography.


Copies of Night Shift can be purchased click here

Sunday 18 November 8.00pm -10.00pm                                                   Write out Loud Festival of Light Celebration Bring your own or a favourite poem to read. Hear Oliver James Lomax’s  Bolton tribute poem, specially commissioned for the Festival. Fee £1 plus raffle. Bolton Socialist Club, Wood Street, BL1    Thursday 22 November 10am to Noon Life Writing with Anne Caldwell (Univ of Bolton) Creative writing workshop using the autobiographical work of Bill Naughton for Inspiration. Free but to book click here Bolton Central Library, Le Mans Crescent, BL1 Thursday 22 November 5pm - 6pm                                

Live from Worktown Anthology Launch   Celebrate the publication of LfW’s fifth anthology  containing over 30 poems and short stories on the theme of ’commemoration’. Free. Limited seating. Costa Coffee at Waterstones, Deansgate BL1  


Sep 1

Events 2017

    The Jazz sessions at Havrey's continued on a more or less monthly basis as follows:   29th Jan 2017 - Born to be Blue with the Dean Masser Quarte 26th Feb 2017 - Carnival night with Cuba Vida 26th Mar 2017 - Rosie Brown: Tribute to Bobby Wellins and the contemporary song book 30th Apr 2017 - Modjango: April in Paris... Manouche Cafe Jazz 28th May 2017 - Blind Monk Trio played some seriously cool jazz. 2nd July 2017 - Jeremy Sassoon Quartet 27th Aug 2017 - Carnival night with Cuba Vida - part of Bolton's food and drink festival 24th Sep 2017 - Dean Masser Quartet 29th Oct 2017 - The Gelatos

Unfortunately, Harvey's closed two days after the Gelatos gig on 31st October and we moved the last two events of the year to Lincoln's Grill and Bar in St Andrew's Court (opposite Harvey's)

26th Nov 2017 - Paul Bibby's Soundsphere 17th Dec 2017 - Alan Taylor Quartet Christmas Special

Big Local Festival August 2017

As part of a day festival, LfW provided and ran the mainstage from 12 noon until 4pm

Noon - 1.50 pm Youth Street Arts Showcase 1pm to 1.50pm Singer/Songwriter showcase featuring: Linda Jennings (The Voice), Nat Clare and James Holt 2pm to 2,50pm Nanukes of the North Ukelele Band featuring Jenny Ryan (The Chase) 3pm to 4pm - Cuba Vida - Salsa and Latin band           Bill Naughton PROGRAMME SEPT TO DEC 2017

    This Programme has been developed in conjunction with, and supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund



All in Good Time : A Play by Bill Naughton later filmed as ‘The Family Way’(1967) : Five Saints Amateur Theatre Company  - in partnership with AOS Company 18-21 October, 7.30pm, Bolton Little Theatre, £10 Tickets - For more information Click Here                                               _________________________________________ Story Play : Presented by the Octagon Theatre : a literary journey of fun and adventure celebrating Bill Naughton’s children’s stories

Fri 27 October, 3.00pm and 4.30 pm, Octagon Theatre Bar, £5 per child with one adult free Click Here for more details and Ticket


Tales of Bolton Life. Four Bill Naughton Bolton-based stories, Big Corner, Weaver's Knot, First Day at Work and Remorse performed by actors from the page and supported by an evocative soundscape and haunting visuals. Dramatised and directed by Cara Novotny .

All Souls Community Centre, Astley St, Halliwell, Bolton BL1 8EY

Two Perfomances

Fri 10 November, one performance at 3.30pm £5 and one at 7.30pm

Both well attended with audiences of over 60 at each,


Live from Worktown 2017 Anthology launch; contemporary short stories and observations of Bolton Life

Thursday 16 November 5.00pm, Waterstones Book Store, Deansgate, Attended by over 50 people.


Best of Bolton : Presented by the Octagon Theatre : poetry, short plays, stories, submitted by you, selected from over 200 entries, and performed by professional actors

Sat 11 November, 2.00pm and 7.30pm, Octagon Main Theatre,



Festival Launch : an opportunity for supporters and sponsors to preview the range of resources created by Live from Worktown and its partners including a new biography and a DVD.

Fri 24 November Bolton Little Theatre, Hanover Street,

This was split into two parts, the first began at 5.30pm when around 30 invited guests (including members of the Naughton family) were treated to free food, wine and speakers including Bernard Wrigley reading from some of Bill's works. This was followed at 7.30pm with a sold out public part of the evening with contributions from Oliver James Lomax (poet) and Dr Nicola Shaw followed by a screening of the film, Spring and Port Wine.

The Bolton news reported it here


The Unobserved Observer On Saturday 25th November, 7.30pm at Bolton Socialist Club (16 Wood St, Bolton BL1 1DY), local musician Michael Chadwick presented this new piece, a musical interpretation of Humphrey Spender's famous photographs of Bolton in the late

30s, telling the fascinating story of Bolton and Mass Observation. Around 30 people attended.


Bill Naughton’s Bolton: : a guided walk through the streets Bill grew up in was led by Dave Burnham.)

Sun 26 November, 2.00pm, meet at McDonalds, Derby Street BL3 6HH.

Around 14 people turned up to brave the cold and wet and listen to Dave's talk. As the weather deteriorated further the talk transferred to the Sweet Green Tavern where it was concluded.


‘Bill Naughton’s Significance as a Writer’ – lecture by Prof David Rudd (University of Roehampton), a national authority on Bill Naughton, PLUS unique access to many original manuscripts in Bolton Archive’s extensive ‘Bill Naughton Collection’. This is an opportunity to see The Bill Naughton Archive : held by Bolton Central Library the archive contains a wealth of original material & manuscripts, film treatments, work in progress, letters, notes, scribbles. Of interest to writers, historians, scholars, as well as sociologists and the general public. An opportunity to sample and find out how to access the archive.

Sat 2 December, 2.00pm, Bolton Central Library. Booking essential.


The Live from Worktown Calendar 2018

This year’s calendar was introduced as part of Live from Worktown’s Bill Naughton Season – which celebrates the life of the local author and the working class roots of Bolton. The images by revered local photographer the late Geoff Davies, chosen by Betty Davies and Ray Jefferson, reflect the legacy of Bolton’s industrial past and capture both the loss of past certainties and pain of change, but also the warmth and creativity of the people who live in this rickety but proud old town. £9.99 from WHSmith’s or Waterstone’s.



This programme has been developed in a ssociation with the Heritage Lottery Fund and with the active involvement of many local organisations including: University of Bolton, Octagon Theatre, Bolton Council, Bolton at Home, Libraries and Museums Service, Bolton Little Theatre,All Souls Community Centre, SS Peter and Pauls RC Primary School, Halliwell History Society, BATS and Bolton Arts Forum.


 Respect the Past, Enjoy the Present, Embrace the Future


Sep 15

Events 2016

 2016 events were put in jeopardy when the Arts Council refused our grant application. However, the team soon rallied and with help from Bolton CVS, local businesses and organisations we managed to put together an Autumn  programme of very successful events which are outlined below:

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Jan 16

Events 2015

The core of the 2015 Live from Worktown Festival took place in the week commencing 18th of May and was headlined by internationally acclaimed founder member of the Mersey Poets, Brian Patten, Mandy Coe and the ever popular John Hegley.

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Mar 7

Events 2014

The festival took place between June and July of 2014, though some of the events involved up to three months of preparation.

By the end of the festival there had been poetry performances in 13 languages at 21 events over 21 days including events in three schools, three youth settings, three branch libraries, and three writers groups together with three workshops, three poetry cafe seminars, three open mic nights, three guest performances, an official launch and a Festival anthology.

All of this was planned and delivered in the eleven weeks from when we received notice of Arts Council funding on the 11th of April. We estimate that over 700 people participated and believe that they represent a good cross section of the Bolton public vis a vis age, gender and ethnicity. Whilst over 1,500 individuals visited the web site in just over a month.

The Festival brought international, award winning writers and performers together and showcased this amazing array in local venues with the support of some fantastic poets, musicians and writers from the Northwest of England.

 Headline events:

 Found in Translation, a night featuring eleven writers, eleven languages and eleven translations on Wednesday 25th June, led by James Hartnell and featuring guest performer Anjum Malik.

 A creative writing workshop and performance by New York’s George Wallace and guests on Thursday 26th June hosted by Scott Devon.

An explosion of words and music with Alabaster Deplume and the Copernicus Ensemble, with guests Rioghnach Connolly and Paddy Steer including a fine set from Don McColl on Friday 27th June.