Black Country spake is pure poetry

Liz BerryWho sez Black Country spake ay poetic? Sedgley-born Liz Berry would certainly disagree!

Liz, whose family hails from Coseley, Bilston and Dudley, feels it should be cherished and championed – and that’s exactly what she’s set out to do with a new book of poetry written in the Black Country dialect.

You can read more about Liz’s background, work and inspiration in this Birmingham Mail interview. We think she’s doing the region a bostin service by sharing the beauty of our regional speech.

Why not show Liz your support and go along to Netherton Library on July 14, where she will be performing some of her poetry as part of Black Country Day celebrations?

And, if you want to hear more poetry and prose spoken like a true Black Country mon (or wench), try these:

The Red House Glass Cone’s Black Country Weekend Festival ends with a whole day dedicated to the spoken word – Black Country style. It includes an exhibition of work entered into a schools poetry competition, sponsored by 102.5 The Bridge Radio, with winners announced at the event.

Black Country Night at the Living Museum will also focus on ‘ow we spake’ – alongside celebrating the music, food and history of the area.

And for the younger audience – join Dudley’s well-loved storyteller Sally Tonge for a traditional evening of stories, music and songs around the campfire at Priory Park.

Come on – speak up for Black Country spake!

Liz Berry’s debut collection Black Country will be published by Chatto & Windus on August 7. She will be reading Netherton Library on July 14 as part of Black Country Day celebrations and will also be appearing at Birmingham Literature Festival on October 4 with Roger McGough. For details of other appearances look up