Keats House looks ahead to Armistice silence and autumnal poetry readings

Keats House in Hampstead, where John Keats composed some of his best-known work, will mark the centenary of the Armistice, as part of its autumn events programme.

The museum and poetry centre, which is owned and managed by the City of London Corporation, will invite visitors to take part in a two-minute silence at 11am on Sunday 11 November.

Readings of poetry written during, and in response to the experiences of, the 1914-1918 conflict will take place throughout the day.

It is believed that Wilfred Owen, arguably, one of the best known First World War poets, was inspired by Keats’s life and works.

Rob Shakespeare, Principal Curator at Keats House, said:

“We have organised a series of special events to complement our regular family day creative workshops, walking tours, and Afternoon Poems readings by the Keats House Poetry Ambassadors.

“As well as our involvement in Open House weekend and events to mark the 200th anniversary of the publication of Frankenstein, we look forward to welcoming the leading Romanticism scholar and award-winning poet, Michael O’Neill, to the House to talk about his new collection, Return of the Gift.

“The two-minute silence, which we will observe with visitors to Keats House on 11 November at 11am, will remember those who lost their lives or suffered life-changing injuries on the field of battle.

Other highlights of the September to November events programme include:

Open House London

Saturday 22 / Sunday 23 September, 11am – 5pm

Don’t miss this opportunity to see inside Keats House for free, as part of Open House London 2018. Join the House’s staff and volunteer-led tours revealing the architecture, history, and inhabitants of the House and take part in our drop-in family activities during the day. FREE, drop in – tours at 11.30am, 1pm, 2.30pm and 3pm.

Templar Poetry Live: Tom Weir collection launch

Thursday 27 September, 7pm – 8.30pm

Join Templar Poetry for a glass of wine and new poetry in the Chester Room at Keats House. Tom Weir launches Ruin, his deeply moving second collection, alongside readings from the latest issue of IOTA Magazine. Poets appearing include Victor Tapper, Rachel Spence and Jonathan Davidson. FREE – booking recommended.

Keats House Poets Black History Month special: Writing Our Roots and Rhythms

Thursday 18 October, 6.30pm – 9.30pm

The Keats House Poets, Laila Sumpton and Stephanie Turner, with Tanya D’Souza, a multi-instrumentalist and percussionist specialising in West African Rhythms, present a very special Black History Month event at Keats House. We invite you to join us for an evening of West African drumming and a poetry writing workshop, followed by an open mic and live performances. FREE – booking recommended.

Late Night Keats: My Hideous Progeny

Wednesday 31 October, 6.30pm – 9pm

Join us to take part in activities inspired by Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein at a special late-night opening of the museum on John Keats’ 223rd birthday. Listen to readings from the novel, join a Gothic tour, and have a go at using ink and quill pens to start your own masterpiece. £15 (including complimentary drink, over-18s only, booking essential).

Keats House Poets: Simon Mole’s workshop

Sunday 25 November, 2pm – 4pm

Join Keats House poet Simon Mole to explore why writing for children and families can mean being more poetic and linguistically playful, as opposed to simplifying your work for a younger audience. FREE – booking recommended.

Volunteer open days will be held on Thursday 20 September and Tuesday 9 October for anyone interested in joining the team at Keats House. Available roles include gaining customer service experience, assisting with events, and leading tours of the House.

The City of London Corporation, which owns and manages Keats House, invests over £100m every year in heritage and cultural activities of all kinds. It is the UK’s largest funder of cultural activities after the government, the BBC, and Heritage Lottery Fund.

The City Corporation is also developing Culture Mile between Farringdon and Moorgate – a multi-million-pound investment which will create a new cultural and creative destination for London over the next 10 to 15 years. This includes £110m funding to support the Museum of London’s move to West Smithfield and £2.5m to support the detailed business case for the proposed Centre for Music.


Notes for Editors:

Keats House is situated at 10 Keats Grove, Hampstead, London, NW3 2RR. Telephone 020 7332 3868. Email – follow us on Facebook at /keatshousemuseum and on Twitter at @keatshouse /

Book events at

Museum opening hours – Wednesday to Sunday, 11am – 5pm

Admission – adults £6.50; Seniors £5.50; Concessions £4.50; Children (17 years and under) free.

About the City of London Corporation:

The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK. 

Media enquiries:

Andrew Buckingham

Media Officer, City of London Corporation

020 7332 1452