Your Local Arena

Welcome to Your Local Arena, a unique UK tour featuring iconic films from the BBC’s Arena archives, the pioneering cultural documentary series. Come and watch these classic films and then hear brand new poems inspired by them, take part in lively talks about them or participate in thought-provoking writing workshops linked to them. From March to December 2020, Your Local Arena will be coming to a UK festival or venue near you.

Your Local Arena is an original ‘film meets literature’ concept developed jointly by Lucy Hannah and Speaking Volumes and funded by Arts Council England. Its creative consultant is Arena’s award-winning director/editor Anthony Wall. Together we’ve matched each festival to an Arena film that relates in some way to the local area and invited great speakers to explore its themes. From working-class Britain to Caribbean writers, football to nineties’ music, there is something for everyone.

In the current climate, Your Local Arena is going digital to still provide an online expereince with the same festivals and venues where it was originally going to be seen. This page will give information on all forthcoming events. We’ll also share Anthony Wall’s introductions to each film and the new poems commissioned from some of the best and brightest poets around. After each event you’ll also be able to enjoy listening to audio interviews and watching video clips from each locality. In these ways, Your Local Arena online will build a mosaic of modern Britain and show how its cultural past gives us inspiration for the future.

See producer Lucy Hannah’s website for more information about the project, events and films:


Upcoming Events:

Your Local Arena with Writing on the Wall, Liverpool – online

The Football Men – Part 3: Looking at three managers who changed the game, Bill Shankly, Matt Busby and Jock Stein, made by Hugh McIlvanney.

With a video panel as Lizzi Doyle, Emy Onoura and Brian Reade discuss the film; poetic responses by Amina Atiq and Ashleigh Nugent; and a life writing workshop by Tony Wailey.

Find out more here

Past Events:

Your Local Arena as part of City Central with Southbank Centre – online

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