Storytelling has come to Cheltenham

Storytelling has come to Cheltenham. Three people:-

Charlie Markwick: The Yarn Whisperer (

Vickie Godding: Smokey Joe’s Coffee Bar (

Jonathan Pollinger: Intranet Future Ltd (

… are embarking on Joe’s Yarns (, and The idea is to promote storytelling as a valued activity in the night life of Cheltenham Town. For the first 6 months around 50% of the costs are being defrayed by a grant from the Late Night Levy Fund managed by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner Gloucestershire and Cheltenham Borough Council.

Charlie Markwick the compere and principal storyteller says: “Listening to stories is something most of us love doing but let slip as we get older. We want to re-establish the sharing of stories as a fun and valued activity for adults as well as children. We will be encouraging people to share stories from their lives and the lives and locations around them. This won’t be a platform for the telling of myths and legends, it will connect the community by sharing tales whether they are funny, sad or unexpected. We want to create a venue where ordinary people gather in a great venue to share the extraordinary stories hidden in us all.”.

Promotion of the events is being handled by Jonathan Pollinger of Intranet Future Ltd a leading Social Media Consultancy. The intention is to employ the latest Social Media techniques alongside the more traditional ones. Jonathan Pollinger says: “I’ve enjoyed listening to stories ever since I was a child. Joe’s Yarns is our attempt to provide an informal environment for people to enjoy listening to stories and to encourage them to share their own. I look forward to encouraging people to spread the word around Cheltenham and surrounding areas to attract people to Smokey Joe’s on the last Wednesday every month.”.

Joe’s Yarns will start at 19:00 on the last Wednesday of the month and takes place at Smokey Joe’s Coffee Bar in Bennington Street in Cheltenham a wonderfully atmospheric and welcoming venue. Vickie Godding, the proprietor says: “This is a great opportunity to expand the cultural activities available to people in and around Cheltenham. We are thrilled  at the prospect of encouraging people to come out at night and have fun with an event that isn’t alcohol based. Smokey Joe’s has always led the way in promoting alternative activities, we already have open mic music night, poetry evenings and much more. Sharing yarns is an exciting extension to this.”.