our regular look at the language of Nicholson's poetry - click here
Welcome to the website of the Norman Nicholson Society. The site aims to provide information about Nicholson and his work and encourage the study and enjoyment of this remarkable man's writings, especially in 2014, the centenary of his birth. Here you will also find information about the NN Society which holds regular events and publishes the newsletter Comet. The Society is based in Millom, on the banks of the River Duddon and in the shadow of Black Combe (pictured), and has a worldwide membership. New members are warmly welcomed.
Header picture of Black Combe in winter by Sue Dawson. 'Centenary' portrait of Norman Nicholson copyright Ray Troll. NN lines from 'The Seventeenth Of The Name' (1972).
Interview with Antoinette Fawcett
An audio interview with the Society's joint secretary Antoinette Fawcett, talking about the formation of the Society and its ongoing work, has been posted on Soundcloud. Find the link on our 'About Us' page.
The thudding of my own blood
If you visit the doctor this winter you might be able to catch up on the poetry of Norman Nicholson while you're waiting. The charity Poems in the Waiting Room is to include NN's poem Nobbut God among the selection they distribute to GP surgeries. As reported in the latest edition of Comet, the charity produces collections of poetry on cards for patients to read when they visit the surgery. The inclusion of the Nicholson poem follows intervention by NN's friend and literary executor Irvine Hunt. It's a free scheme so why not encourage your local practice to sign up? More information from the charity's website www.poemsinthewaitingroom.org. Among the medics finding room for stanzas among the stethoscopes are some in Germany, Romania and Sweden.
Change of venue
Please note that Grevel Lindop's Norman Nicholson Centenary Lecture on October 20th, 'Not by the Dark, but by Dazzle,' will take place at the Royal Asiatic Society, 14 Stephenson Way, London NW1 2HD and not at the Lincoln Centre as previously advertised. Nearest Underground stations are Euston/Euston Square. Doors open at 6.30pm.
Lecture 7pm. In the chair: Ian Skelly.
Admission £5 or £3.50 concessions.
The distinction between poet and historian....
Is there one? Malcolm Morrison comments on the Nicholson documentary broadcast on BBC Radio Cumbria here
Beck featured on BBC Radio 3
Monday's edition of The Essay, the first in a series of four
15-minute talks about how geology has shaped people's favourite landscapes, made mention of Norman Nicholson and his poem Beck. The presenter is Sue Clifford, co-founder of the arts and environment organisation Common Ground.
The programme can be found on the BBC iplayer here. The Nicholson reference appears just after five minutes.
Norman Nicholson Collection Encounters
The John Rylands Library at the University of Manchester is to host two Norman Nicholson Collection Encounters. They will be taking place on Tuesday 21st October, 3.30-4.30pm and Saturday 29th November, also 3.30-4.30pm.
The Rylands Library holds the Nicholson Archive and members have enjoyed valuable visits in the past. The two Encounters are free, but you will need to book, either by phone 0161 306 0555 or email email@example.com
The two events are now included in the list of forthcoming events on the JRL website www.library.manchester.ac.uk/rylands/events
Numbers are limited to 20 for each session, so book as soon as possible if you would like to go.
Word of the Month
There's going to be a new feature on the website from September 1st - Word of the Month. Taking inspiration from the University of Glasgow’s Centre for Burns Studies project website, which includes a ‘Word of the Week’ article on particular words in Burns’ vocabulary, the Norman Nicholson Society has decided to do something similar. Nicholson is by no means a dialect poet, but he does give his language and imagery a special Northern flavour in his choice of words. Our inaugural article is written by Antoinette Fawcett, editor of Comet. But which word has she put under the spotlight? Find out on Monday when Word of the Month is launched.
And if you or someone you know would like to contribute an article as a future Word of the Month, do please let us know via the Contact Form.
Comet rich in content
The new edition of Comet is on its way to members. The current edition includes personal memories of Nicholson by Susan Troll; Chris Donaldson on Poetry in Railways and Nicholson's role therein; Alan Beattie's take on contemporary poets inspired by Nicholson; and much more.
Critical biography on its way
Norman Nicholson: A Literary Life by NN Society member David Boyd is due for publication later this year. David describes the book as a critical biography, taking a fresh look at the full range of Nicholson's output. Advance orders are currently being accepted at the discounted rate of £9.99 inclusive of postage. Visit the book's website HERE
Norman Nicholson: Something to Tell
Norman Nicholson was born in Millom, Cumbria, in 1914 and lived there until his death in 1987 with the exception of two years in his late teens when he was sent to a sanatorium in Hampshire to recover from tuberculosis - an event which shaped his subsequent life. His writing career lasted from 1930 until his death and embraced plays, poetry, novels, criticism and essays. He is best known for his poetry and was awarded the Queens Medal for Poetry in 1977 and the OBE in 1981.
Our new feature discusses the language of Nicholson's poetry and celebrates the Northern English energies in his writing. Click HERE
Centenary events 2014
*Events marked with an asterisk are organised by the Norman Nicholson Society. This website publishes details of events promoted by other organisations in good faith but cannot accept responsibility should any details be inaccurate. If you know of any events which would interest members of the Society please let us know via the Contact Form.
Click here to find it.
St George's Church, Millom
photo copyright Millom Parochial Church Council
Norman Nicholson is buried in the churchyard of St George's, Millom. In 2000 a memorial window created by Christine Boyce was installed. The window depicts various scenes and themes from Norman's writings. An explanation can be found on the Cleo website (Cumbria and Lancashire Education Online).
To locate the grave of Norman and Yvonne Nicholson: walk past the church into the graveyard and turn right into the 'new' extended section facing Black Combe. Follow the path down round a hairpin bend and take the first paved path on the right. You'll see a seat placed with its back to the wall. The grave is directly in front of the seat.
Radio Cumbria conducted a series of interviews with members of the Society throughout the day of NN's centenary, January 8th 2014.
Click HERE to find the audio and then
click the orange 'play' arrow, top left.
The interviews are reproduced by kind
permission of BBC Radio Cumbria.
Inspiring youngsters today
This photographic interpretation of Nicholson's poem 'Windscale' by pupils of Millom School shows how his writing inspires young people today. See more in 'Our Page!'
Millom Discovery Centre
NICHOLSON EXHIBITION: The refurbished Millom Discovery Centre contains a collection of artefacts, documents and memorabilia connected with Norman Nicholson. Click here for more on the Discovery Centre and here for a slideshow of the NN display.
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Keep in touch and join in the chat. Log onto Facebook and type into the Search box Norman Nicholson Society