Mervyn Linford

Location: Sudbury, Suffolk
About me...

I am an author, poet and small press publisher (Littoral Press). I write mostly about nature, both in prose and poetry. My country journals concern themselves with such subjects as natural history, farming, country pursuits, the weather, poetry, the arts, local history, country life in general and much, much, more……. My poetry is also nature orientated but not entirely. Some 30% of my poems are satirical and concern themselves with the socio/political and economic world we inhabit.

About my Talks and Readings...

My talks and readings are all ‘stand-alone’ – I do not need any special equipment.


My fee is just £50 – I will reduce this amount for any groups who for whatever reason are genuinely lacking the necessary finance – although I will have to make a moderate charge for my fuel if the distance from Lavenham is more than 25 miles.

My Contact Details:


-Talks & Readings-

Journey Down the Stour

Journey down the Stour is a talk inspired by the book of the same name which took some three years to write. It follows the river from its source in Cambridgeshire and then through the Suffolk and Essex borders until it enters the North Sea between Felixstowe and Harwich. The talk covers such subjects as: nature, farming, the arts, poetry, the countryside, country sports, the weather, local history and much more.

Reflections: Twelve Months, Twelve Moods along the Chelmer/Blackwater Navigation 

Reflections: The talk is subtitled Twelve Months, Twelve Moods, along the Chelmer/Blackwater Navigation. The months and the moods concern the areas natural history and the reflections look into the local history of the surrounding countryside and the actual history of the Navigation itself. The canal runs from Heybridge Basin and its sea lock into the River Blackwater and westwards to the very centre of the City of Chelmsford with its modern marinas. Come for a gentle voyage with yours truly – no need for a lifebelt, just sit back, relax, and float through history, the water meadows and the seasons.

The Incomplete Dangler – Fifty years of Sea and Freshwater Fishing – Tidal Tales, Stillwater Stories

This is not a talk about the finer points of the angler’s art. There are a few hints and wrinkles for those with a technical disposition but mostly the talk is about the trials and tribulations involved throughout 50 years of sea and freshwater fishing – with a smidgen of game fishing thrown in for good measure. Humour and nature are at the fore and a succession of fish of various real and imagined sizes swim through the stillwater tales and tidal anecdotes of the watery background. All in all this is a talk where fun and fact both compete for their own ascendancy and for the piscatorial attention of a hopefully hooked and landed audience. Don’t worry I shall leave the ‘priest’ at home (Priest: blunt instrument for dispatching fish!)

Basildon New Town – A Memoir 1952-1969 – Plotland Memories and much more

In the summer of 1952 at the tender age of six years I moved from the prefabs and the bombsites of Canning Town in the East End of London to Basildon New Town. In those days Pitsea was still a marshland village and the Barstable Estate where I lived and the Whitmore Way Estate some two miles to the Northwest were home to the only new-built dwellings. The rest consisted of farms, fields, ‘wasteland’, smallholdings, hawthorn thickets, elm trees, creeks, saltings and from the high ground of One Tree Hill views of the distant sea across the floodplains of the Thames Estuary. This memoir charts the evolution of the town from its basically rural beginnings to the vast urban network that Basildon has since become. Although, even now after seventy years in the making, one can still find areas around the edges of the town where escape from the fast pace and incessant noise of the 21st century can be achieved. Wat Tyler Country Park and Pitsea Marina combine to soothe the digital breakup of the postmodern mind with the therapeutic benefits of both coast and countryside. One Tree Hill and Langdon Hills, which attain almost ‘mountainous proportions’ alongside the coastal flatlands of Southern Essex elevate the soul and the senses with their natural charms and the ‘Plotland’ museum at Dunton takes one back to a simpler and less stressful time of open fields, ersatz buildings, vegetable plots, orchards, well-water, oil lamps and self-sufficiency: the ‘Good Old Days?’ Perhaps – we’ll see!


A journey through the major pagan sabbats of the year: Samhain, Yule, Imbolc, Ostara, Beltane, Litha, Lammas and Mabon, with explanations of the festivals and extracts from a book length poem ‘Meanderings’ that takes as its point of inspiration the River Chelmer aka The Chelmer/Blackwater Navigation.

The Incidental Marshman

A Marshland journey through the history, nature, arts, literature, the seasons etc. along the North Bank of the Thames Estuary from Mucking Creek near the new Thames Gateway container port to the ‘Broomway’ (a track across the mudflats marked out by withies) alongside Foulness Island.

Poems for the Planet

Poems and perceptions about the environment, the weather, pollution and climate change in general countered by hopefulness at the eleventh hour with poems of celebration of the natural world and reasons to protect and cherish what with have before it’s too late. All of the poems and perceptions will come from three of my published poetry collections: ‘Poems for the Planet, ‘Sheperd’s Warning’ and ‘Credo’.

- Talks about my Country Journals -

- East Anglian Miscellany -

Poetry Reading and Talk about the people, places, nature, and local history etc.…….of East Anglia

I have been writing and publishing poetry for nearly fifty years. Approximately 70% of my work is nature orientated. The other 30% concerns itself with various topics allied to my socio/political and economic interests – satire is never far away from these concerns. East Anglian Miscellany is both a talk and a poetry reading. The nature, people, places, history and many other aspects of this diverse and contrasting area where I have lived for almost a lifetime come together to paint a picture in words and poetic imagery that hopefully conjures something of its unique and inspirational characteristics. The music and the meaning of words will drift in and out of the imaginative spaces both virtual and real from the Thames to the Waveney, from the Broadlands to the Brecklands and from the Suffolk Stour to the Essex saltings.

Mervyn Linford Contact Details:


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