Newham Word Festival

Royal Docks Summer Programme

Newham Word Festival

Newham Word Festival, a vibrant celebration of the written and spoken word will take over the borough this July with creative workshops, art, music, discussions, author talks, poetry and more, all marking the 10th anniversary of the London Olympic and Paralympic Games!

Join poets, authors, artists, performers, musicians and more to be part of this incredible tribute to all things word. All the events taking place for the Newham Word Festival will speak to the seven Olympic and Paralympic values of friendship, respect, excellence, equality, determination, inspiration and courage.

Newham Word Festival proudly celebrates artists from near and far, those at the peak of their careers or those just starting out. Many events will take place in person at libraries, theatres, community centres and more – and a selection of events will take place online too.

There’s a host of activities taking place at venues across the Royal Docks, including community events, performances, mindfulness, meditation and journaling plus author talks by Olaf Falafel, Kasim Ali, Ayanna Lloyd Banwo and Adam Moore.

9 July

My Mindful A-Zen: 26 wellbeing Haiku for happy little minds (ages 3+)
Beckton Globe Library, E6 5JQ
11am - 12pm

Join illustrator, author and designer Krina Sage-Patel at this craft-based event designed for ages 3+ to hear about her A-Z of Haiku poems. You and your little ones can decorate your own feelings butterflies with colours and shapes reflecting your chosen emotion. Write how your butterflies feel and why, then hang your masterpieces or cut them out and set them free!

Part of Newham Word Festival. Book your free place:

Lion Dance performances by UK Chinese Sports Federation Lion Dance Masters and Artists
Beckton Globe Library, E6 5JQ
12pm - 2pm

Head to Beckton Globe Library on 9 July to see lions dance! This traditional form of Chinese folk-art and street performance conveys happiness, joy and the celebration of achievements, pride and family values. Expect noisy drum and gong music, mixed with elegant movements of Lion Heads. Everyone’s invited to come and see this memorising Lion Dance performance.

Part of Newham Word Festival. Book your free place:

10 July

Summer Readings & Rituals
Good Hotel London, E16 1FA
3pm - 5pm

You’re invited to an afternoon of Summer Readings & Rituals at the Good Hotel London. Discover extracts of published texts, conversations, works in progress as well as collected and specially-commissioned writing which examines our relationship to our planet and each other. This session will create a place to celebrate belonging and our friendship with the natural world, as well as with one another.

Curated by the international collective of artists and writers, Abby Nocon (USA), Adam Moore (UK), Erin Robinsong (Canada), Sophie Seita (UK), and Florence Uniacke (UK), this session will be led by Adam Moore.

Part of Newham Word Festival. Book your free place:

Please note, all are welcome but children must be accompanied by an adult.

12 July

Kasim Ali and Ayanna Lloyd Banwo in conversation (adults only)
The Silver Building, E16 1YZ
6.30pm - 8pm

Listen as debut writers Kasim Ali and Ayanna Lloyd Banwo sit down to discuss their work and their experiences of being first-time novelists.

Kasim Ali’s debut novel, Good Intentions, is a captivating and powerful modern love story. He has previously been longlisted for the 4th Estate Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Short Story Prize and shortlisted for Hachette’s Mo Siewcherran Prize.

Ayanna Lloyd Banwo’s debut When We Were Birds is mythic love story set in Trinidad & Tobago, where two unforgettable outsiders are brought together by their connection with the dead. She has been shortlisted for the Small Axe Literary Competition and the Wasafiri New Writing Prize.

Adults only. Part of Newham Word Festival. Book your free place:

Puneet Bhandal - Starlet Rivals (for school years 4-5)
North Woolwich Library, E16 2LJ
10.30am - 11.30am

Author and former Bollywood film journalist, Puneet Bhandal will be leading this event created for school years 4-5 based on her debut novel, Starlet Rivals. This Bollywood-themed event will introduce children to Bollywood music and dance, hear all about the main character of Starlet Rivals, 12-year-old Bela who has just joined the Bollywood Academy. Students better get ready to dance!

A school event for years 4 – 5. Part of the Newham Word Festival. To book, email with the number of classes you would like to bring, and their year group/s.

14 July

Royal Docks Create (for ages 14 - 18)
Royal Docks Learning and Activity Centre, E16 2BJ
6.30pm - 9pm

Join this free community event and music showcase for and by local young people of the Royal Docks. Get set for original music by young performers, table tennis, BBQ and tasty food, ideal for those aged 14 – 18 years of age.

Part of Newham Word Festival. Book your place:

15 July

Olaf Falafel - BLOBFISH! (for school years 1 - 2)
Beckton Globe Library, E6 5JQ
10.30am - 11.30am

Join comedian and author-illustrator extraordinaire, Olaf Falafel to find out all about his latest picture book: BLOBFISH!

Blobfish lives deep, deep, deep under the sea and loves telling jokes. The only thing is, he has no one to share them with, so he sets off on an adventure to find a friend. Sometimes friends turn up in the most unexpected places, even at the bottom of the ocean. 

An energetic and exciting event packed full of jokes and drawing which also gently introduces children to the issue of plastics in our oceans.

Part of Newham Word Festival. A school event for years 1-2. To book, email with the number of classes you would like to bring, and their year group/s.

16 July

Women MAKE Stories Mindfulness Workshop (adults only)
Wonderful Things, E16 1ZA
10.30am - 1pm

In this workshop, Women MAKE Stories founder Daniela Bragato will guide you through gentle mindfulness meditations and journaling prompts on the topic of courage, what it means to you and how you can connect with it. Daniela’s priority is to create a friendly and non-judgemental space and allow you to journal and meditate without any pressure.

Throughout the session she’ll invite you to share any thoughts or reflections you might have, although there’s never any pressure to share your writing. You don’t need any prior writing or mindfulness experience and you can write in any language you like.

This event is for women, including anybody who identifies themselves as a woman, and non-binary people. Part of Newham Word Festival. Book your free place:

Time & date

4 - 17 July


Venues in the Royal Docks and across Newham


Free to attend, booking advised

For your visit

New Arrival

Food & Drink

Perky Blenders

Everything about Perky Blenders x Goodvibes is upbeat and friendly, from the name and the decor all the way to its coffee.

Royal Victoria Dock
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Henley Arms

A local fixture since 1901, this pub seems untouched since its post-war refurbishment. Step back in time and enjoy a pint over a game of darts.

North Woolwich
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Royal Wharf Community Dock

From adult ballet classes to dance and drama classes for kids, this new centre in the heart of Royal Wharf has begun with a bang.

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