The Orators

September 16, 2009

Four minutes into 'The Raven': 'Tis the wind and nothing more!'

Four minutes into 'The Raven': 'Tis the wind and nothing more!'

Edgar Allan Poe with your lunch, sir? If you passed through St Andrew Square Garden today, you might well have been favoured with a personal poem recital from our Poetry Orators. Actors Jamie and Gilchrist charmed their audiences with a mix of Shakespeare (‘I grant I never saw a goddess go / My mistress when she walks treads on the ground…’), Burns, Poe and, erm, a poem about the pleasures of relieving yourself… The highlight was an eight-minute rendition of ‘The Raven’ (the whole thing! by heart!) about which Lilias commented: ‘It’s made me weak!’ The Orators took this as a compliment.

Lunching ladies are serenaded with 'Ae Fond Kiss'

Lunching ladies are serenaded with 'Ae Fond Kiss'


We’ll be back in the Poetry Garden on National Poetry Day, handing out poem postcards to the rush-hour crowds – we may even be able to tempt Jamie and Gilchrist back for an encore.

A consultant is required to carry out a feasibility study into developing the Poetry Garden in St Andrew Square, Edinburgh

Summary: The Scottish Poetry Library, on behalf of the Poetry Garden in St Andrew Square Steering Group, wishes to appoint a consultant to carry out a feasibility study into the proposed development from 2010-2013 of Edinburgh’s St Andrew Square as a space for poetry in the heart of the city.

Growing the Poetry Garden
St Andrew Square, recently opened to the public for the first time in generations, has been officially designated as a place for poetry in the heart of Edinburgh, first UNESCO City of Literature. Already the Garden features poems on the glass of the Coffee Republic pavilion and on surrounding buildings, and occasional poetry events.
The Poetry Garden Steering Group proposes to further develop poetry in St Andrew Square and to establish the Garden as an oasis of imagination. We want to bring people into the Garden to discover poetry in the heart of a vibrant literary city, to enrich the experience of those visiting the Garden, and to stimulate the people’s enjoyment of poetry. The  feasibility study will provide a blueprint for this development.

The successful applicant will:

  • Identify potential sources of support and involvement, in cash and in kind, that will enable us to carry out our three-year plan for the Poetry Garden
  • Suggest funding model/s, encompassing corporate sponsorship and public funding
  • Identify businesses, community/arts/funding organisations, and individuals with whom we can develop relationships with a view to securing support for the garden
  • Identify needs of potential funders and recommended methods of approach to secure funding
  • Identify potential barriers to success
  • Make recommendations as to how the steering group should develop and how the Poetry Garden project should be run long-term

The successful applicant will have excellent business and cultural contacts within Edinburgh, extensive knowledge of arts funding sources including corporate, public and trust funding, and a proven track record in conducting feasibility studies and delivering project outcomes.

Interested applicants should email Jane Alexander,, for full details including fee and timescales, consultancy brief and the Poetry Garden three-year development plan.

Deadline for expressions of interest and intended approach: Tuesday 13 October 2009.