Fen Folks Fridays

Do you love the Fens? Fen Folks Fridays are a new free zoom meet up group, that meet once a month to share topics and learn about the fens. It started with a aim to bring people together, and as a way to try to unite people in the fens. Please book the sessions in advance to avoid disappointment.

Each event include a speaker, discussion about events and activities coming up in the fens, and a chance to natter to each other to share memories and fen facts.

If you would like to be a speaker, please get in touch. We try to aim for a variety of talks, covering all areas of the fens (Cambridgeshire, Lincolnshire, Norfolk and Suffolk) on a variety of topics (heritage, nature, creativity, wellbeing and accessibility). Please also let us know if you have an event, that you would like advertising.

Fascinating fens co-ordinates the evening voluntarily, including being the actual host and technical host. If you would like to volunteer to help, please get in touch. Roles for this project include: co-host, welcoming guests, finding speakers and identifying places where the evening can be advertised.

Although the events are free, sponsorship or donations would be welcome, to cover the technical costs of running the evenings. Please get in touch if you are a business interested in sponsoring a session, in return for sponsorship we would give advertising on this page, our social media pages and e-newsletter. If you are an attendee, and would like to make a donation, please use https://paypal.me/fascinatingfens

We are delighted to announce that Healthy Fenland has awarded Fen Folks Fridays a grant to help set up the group to provide the talks in 2021. Huge thanks to them.

Fen Folks Fridays 2021-2022 season:

17th September 2021: A hundred years of farming by Alan Stennett.

15th October 2021: The Frightening Fens by Ben Langley.

19th November 2021: RSPB in the Fens by Daniel Pullan and Bethany Kiamil.

17th December 2021: Festive Fen Quiz.

21st January 2022: FenScapers

Our January Fen Folks Friday features FenScapers. A new group of creative writers who share a love of the Fens, the environment and are inspired by the natural world to create short stories and poetry. They will read from their work and celebrate the launch of their first FenScapers podcast which is available for download.

18th February 2022: Railways in The Fens: The Social Effects by Brian Watson.

Brian Watson talks about the effects on local communities that the railways had in Fenland, both in their coming and their going. The new lines were frequently promoted by landowners wanting to get their farm produce out but that didn’t necessarily mean they wanted tracks or stations actually on their land! Communities that had been quite self-sufficient suddenly became more connected to places on, or beyond, the horizon. How did that change them, and what was the effect of passenger and freight facilities being withdrawn? Brian will talk about these issues, but please bring any memories or knowledge that you have on rural lines in Fenland to share with us on Zoom.

18th March 2022: The Great Fen

22nd April 2022: Mills in the Fens tbc

27th May 2022: Fens, Romans, Countrymen: A History of Eels in the Fens by Dr John Wyatt Greenlee tbc

17th June 2022: Celebrate the Fens Weekend launch

Fen Folks Fridays 2020-2021 season:

July and August 2021: Meet up at a fen pub garden for a friendly drink.

18th June 2021: Celebrate the Fens Weekend: launched by special guest Francis Pryor

21st May 2021: Digging in the Fens by Robert Smith

16th April 2021: Fen Weather Memories by George Adamson

19th March 2021: Peter Appleton, poet and author of “Ely: An experimental dream poem”.

19th February 2021: Narrow boating in the Fens by Simon Judge.

22nd January 2021: Whittlesey Strawbear by Brian Kell

We held 4 pilot sessions: to see if people are interested, whether it is feasible and sustainable. During the pilot different formats were trialled including: duration of speakers, types of topics/discussion and styles of presentation. Therefore feel free to give feedback.

4th December 2020: Featured Speaker: Lyn Gibb de-Swarte about Fen Skating and Bandy. Spotlight topic: Festive fen quiz.

20th November 2020: Featured speaker: Rachael Brown from Fens Biosphere. Spotlight topic: Fascinating Fens update.

23rd October 2020: Featured Speaker: James Boyce writer of Imperial mud, and Ivor Rowlands from Kings Lynn Shakespeare guildhall.

25th September 2020: Featured speaker: Paul Burrows a Flood & Coastal Risk Manager for the River Great Ouse catchment at the Environment Agency. Spotlight speaker: Roy Pallet from Soham Pumpkin fair.

For more information please get in touch or explore the other fascinating fens pages:

Find out more about fascinating fens by visiting our “Home” page or “About us” page.

Or by requesting to receive our free quarterly e-newsletter.
Find out about how you can “get involved” with fascinating fens projects such as “Celebrate The Fens Day”.

Or visit our “Shop” for Fen gifts: books, calendar and illustrations.
“Explore the Fens” through this website: heritage, creativity, nature, wellbeing and accessibility.

“Muscovy and Eeli” and the “Fascinating Fen Tails” will help children explore.