City of Stories Short Stories

Creative Writing

In June 2017 we launched City of Stories, a brand-new ACE-funded partnership between the Association of London Chief Librarians and Spread the Word, to celebrate London’s writers, readers and libraries. We’re so pleased to have had such a phenomenal response so far, with over 40 free workshops across the capital and hundreds of people getting involved.

The four City of Stories writers-in-residence, Courttia Newland, Alex Wheatle, Bidisha and Irenosen Okojie were commissioned to write a short story inspired by their residency. The stories have been made into beautiful films by High Six Media and celebrate different parts of London across different timelines; from the Dickensian era to modern-day, exploring – in intricate detail – the lives of everyday Londoners.

We hope you enjoy watching this showcase:

You can also download and read the City of Stories short stories here:

When the Bombs Stop Falling By Bidisha

Rose and Crown by Alex Wheatle

Mr Pal’s Retreat by Courttia Newland

Kookaburra Sweet by Irenosen Okojie


Thank you to the staff at Kingston Library, The Library at Willesden Green, Idea Store Whitechapel and Forest Hill Library. Thanks also to our writers-in-residence, the BSL interpreters on the day and to High Six Media for bringing these stories to life.


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