Walking Cities

  • 2014 - ongoing
  • Mumbai, Calcutta, Wales, Canada, Doha

Walking Cities pairs up UK and international writers and enables them to tour each other’s respective local cities, providing an opportunity for the visiting poet or writer to encounter the foreign city through the eyes of their host. Walking cities has happened in countries across the world.

To mark the centenary of Dylan Thomas’ birth the British Council and Wales Arts International supported a series of ‘Walking Cities’ poet exchanges between key locations in Wales and India to foster dialogue and create opportunities for new creative collaborations.  In November 2014, Rhian Edwards was paired with Ranjit Hoskote, and Eurig Salisbury with Sampurna Chattarji, for a series of walks through the streets of Mumbai, culminating in a collaborative performance at Mumbai Lit Live. In February 2015, Joe Dunthorne was paired with Jeet Thayil, and Jonathan Edwards with Tishani Doshi, for a series of walks in Kolkata, culminating in a collaborative performance at Kolkata Book Fair. A film was also commissioned that captures the four writers walking through the streets of Kolkata:



Discover our Shakespeare Walking Cities as part of Shakespeare Lives filmed on locations across Europe in 2016. The walks took place in Spain, Greece, Austria and Scotland.  Pairs of authors included UK author Kamila Shamsie who went to Olite in Spain to walk and talk with the Spanish author and translator Javier Montes. Roberto Reccioni, an Italian cartoonist and writer, met Delia Jarrett-Macauley, the UK novelist and academic in Rome. In Verona, UK games writer Cara Ellison met Italian Michele 'Sabaku No Maiku' Poggi to discuss the similarities between Shakespeare language-generated identities and the virtual reality computer games of today. Find out more and watch the films here.

And Walking Cities Canada was created in 2017 in four cities across Canada: Vancouver, Winnipeg, Toronto and Montréal. While they walked they talked about the relationship between the city, space, identity and their own writing, comparing and contrasting views and experiences from different sides of the Atlantic. UK poets Dean Atta and Deanna Rodger, explored the bookshops of Vancouver with Canadian poet Dina Del Bucchia. Poets Vahni Capildeo and Dionne Brand walked through Toronto’s West End and discuss the multiplicity of languages, the colonial architecture and the significance of street corners. Writer and performer Harry Giles from Orkney, Scotland, took an imaginary walk with Métis writer Katherena Vermette in Winnipeg. Writers Rachel McCrum, Jonathan Lamy and Moe Clark stroll through Little Italy in Montréal reflecting on the city’s cultural diversity. Read more here.

Walking Cities Montreal


Related writers

Joe Dunthorne 2011 credit Angus Muir

Joe Dunthorne was born and brought up in Swansea, and is a graduate of the University of East Anglia...


Tishani Doshi 1 Denzil Sequeira web

Tishani Doshi is a writer and dancer of Welsh-Gujarati origin. She was born in Madras, India, in 197...


Jeet Thayil credit Basso Cannarsa website

Jeet Thayil was born in Kerala, India in 1959 and was educated in Hong Kong, New York and Bombay. He...


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