Focal Point Gallery is partnering with Essex Book Festival for a series of Radical Walks across Essex, re-examining the county in relation to radicalism in thought, lifestyle, politics and architecture. 

Fancy retracing ‘Peasant Poet’ John Clare’s steps through Epping Forest with poet/writer Robert Hamberger?

Exploring Harlow’s Sculpture Trail featuring works by the likes of Henry Moore, Elisabeth Frink and Barbara Hepworth with Peter Aylmer, one of the UK’s leading outdoor writers?

Stepping back in time in Tilbury with artist Emma Twine on the trail of the Bata Shoe Factory?

Then get booking now for our programme of In My Steps: Radical Walks in Essex

Emma Twine Bata Heritage Centre 3x2

The Bata Estate and Tilbury Marshes with Emma Twine 

Saturday 21st May

Experience the Bata Estate with architect Emma Twine.

Starting at East Tilbury Library, visit Bata Heritage Centre and see the archives of this modernist working town, before exploring the flat top housing estate, factory buildings and nearby marshlands.

Image: Bata Hotel, 1932, courtesy Bata Heritage Centre

Go to the event page for Emma Twine’s Radical Walk to find out more

Robert Hamberger In John Clare's Boots

In John Clare’s Boots: The Poet in Epping Forest with Robert Hamberger 

Saturday 28th May

Join the poet Robert Hamberger to follow in the footsteps of the ‘peasant poet’ John Clare, retracing aspects of the time Clare spent at High Beach asylum in Epping Forest.

We’ll walk near the site of the asylum, explore some of the areas in the Forest, where he walked, the poems Clare wrote and also hear Robert read from his memoir A Length of Road.

In partnership with Epping Forest Heritage Trust

Go to the event page for Robert Hamberger’s Radical Walk to find out more

Peter Aylmer Harlow Sculpture

Sculpture and the use of space in Harlow with Peter Aylmer

Saturday 4th June

Outdoor writer Peter Aylmer leads you round a selection of Harlow’s 100+ public sculptures.

The celebration of art was key to the vision of Harlow’s master planner, Sir Frederick Gibberd – as also was his understanding of the site, gently sloping down to the River Stort, with its tributaries respected as green corridors to link distinct communities.

But is that vision now threatened by new developments on the edge of town?

Go to the event page for Peter Aylmer’s Radical Walk to find out more

Elsa James Syd Moore Othering

Othered in a region that has been historically Othered with Elsa James and Syd Moore

Saturday 9th July

Artist Elsa James will be joined by novelist and activist Syd Moore to lead a guided walk from Mistley to Manningtree, the setting of the county’s famed witch hysterias which are mentioned in several of Moore’s books.

In her new exhibition at Focal Point Gallery, James focuses on the speculative presence of Black women during the Essex Witch Trials.

Finishing up at The Red Lion pub, the walk will be followed by a discussion around the historical persecution of women and ‘othering’. 

Image credit: Black Girl Essex: Here We Come, Look We Here (2019) Film still, Tilbury Docks, Essex, HD video with sound, duration 13:40 mins. Image: Andy Delaney

Go to the event page for Elsa James’ Radical Walk to find out more

Logo for Focal Point Gallery
Logo for Radical Essex