Stour is an A5 publication of writing and illustrations on culture, wildlife and place, celebrating the Stour Valley and providing a legacy artefact for the River Stour Festival and The River Runs Through Us project. It features new and previously published works by Ronald Blythe CBE, Stuart Bowditch,  James Canton, Simon Carter, Justin Hopper, Hilary Owers, Ruth Philo, Jules Pretty OBE, Susannah Robirosa, Matthew Rooney, Alison Rowlands, Darren Tansley and John Thornes.

This book was published by Estuarine Press on 15th June 2018. Edition of 500. £5 each.

My contribution (below) is a poem made from quotes taken from conversations with people met in the Stour Valley whilst working on The River Runs Through Us. I saved them up in my notebook and then assembled them for inclusion in Stour.

Stream of Words

Painters talking painters talk
Texture of the real world
Radical, not chocolate box

Pause on a wall
Long views
The world looks more like a painting than a photograph

Wherever we stroll the way belongs to us
The Judas Gap
Langham Flumes
Ha’Penny Pier
It’s a tidy step to Wormingford Mere
Willy Lott’s House
The magic cottage, a camera obscura
Walk for ten minutes and you’re somewhere else


Hemlock smalls like a mouse nest
Rewilding the landscape
The rain came down like sheets of sea
Thick on the ground
Slow the flow
Riparian rights
It’s like riding a bike, but on the water

He’s a lovely chap, but take your own mug!
The cow hide he wants is walking about in a field
Railway track (dismantled)
A patchwork of jobs
It’s a shame it fell over as Constable painted it