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Coventry’s UK City of Culture – What’s On THIS MONTH

Coventry Moves, Saturday 5th June

Kicking off events on Saturday 5th June, Coventry Moves is taking place all across the city and you are able to tune in online, on your radio and on your timeline for incredible events taking place all day long. You can tune in to watch live performances, short films and much more as it unfolds throughout the day on, and follow @Coventry2021 on social media to experience the action all day.

From 8am, you can tune in to a live stream featuring artist Pauline Black as she begins the Coventry Moves event with a song celebrating Coventry’s hidden river.

At 8.30am, you are invited to watch a short film of Five River Runners exploring the hidden river running under Coventry through Dance, Parkour and BMX Biking.

At 9.30am, Coventry Moves explores the city’s deep rooted commitment to sustainability and the environment in a short film discovering the story behind Coventry’s name; Cofa’s Tree and our future commitments to protecting planet earth.

At 10.30, the short film People Power will focus on stories of individuals and communities who have travelled across the world to build Coventry as we celebrate Refugee Week at UK’s City of Culture 2021. 

Coventry Moves continues it’s events at 11am with a live stream as city residents and well known faces bring the streets alive with dance and music, celebrating Coventry’s rich history in the car manufacturing industry. 

At 1.30pm, watch a short film around Innovation, meeting some of the individuals who inspired the stories of Coventry Moves.

Then, at 2pm, join a live stream with Daniel Lismore to celebrate Coventry creating the bicycle as we look at the past, present and future innovations of the city.

At 6pm, watch a short film around Resilience, meeting some of the locals who inspired the stories of Coventry Moves.

At 6.30, watch a short film of the 14 Godivas as we share stories of social justice and what it means to be a Godiva.

At 7pm, you are introduced to Sue Bent for a live stream following our 14 modern day local Godivas arriving into the city on horseback and moving to the ruins of Coventry’s Cathedral. Join a moment of reflection as we look at the lives lost and the opportunity for peace.

Joining Sue Bent and our modern day Godivas at Coventry’s Cathedral, the Five River Runners and Pauline Black join this live stream to see a tree growing from the concrete. A gift from the schoolchildren in Coventry will appear, with an incredible AR experience which can be enjoyed in person for the coming weeks.

At 20.21pm exactly, broadcast via your radio, Coventry Moves Together invites everyone to join in for this end to the day’s events. Tune in to local and community radios as Coventry Moves Together premieres music created by composer Dan Jones using Coventry children’s voices.

A brand new piece of music marking a huge celebration of community will be played via different individual streams simultaneously at exactly 20.21pm. BBC Coventry & Warwickshire Radio, Block Radio, Radio Panj, Hillz FM, Radio Abbey, Fresh, Vanny Radio, Radio Plus, and Arawak will all be playing individual streams of music from the composer Dan Jones’ piece. And your participation is essential!

Imagine the radio stations are different sections in an orchestra and each of your devices is a single instrument. Dan Jones’ piece featuring the children of Coventry’s voices will be amplified across the city using your own devices!

Get your neighbours involved to tune in to different channels across different devices to weave a musical tapestry across the city. Using every possible device you can – car stereos, televisions, mobiles, laptops, portable radios, bluetooth speakers and stereo systems, turn the volume up to turn Coventry and its radio stations into one massive surround sound system. Tune in and Take Part at 20:21 exactly. As Coventry Moves Together.

Find out more about the creative team behind Coventry Moves and which radio stations will be streaming each different tune here.

Cariba Dance, on until Tuesday 8th June.

Take part in vibrant carnival dance classes online for free with local choreographer Sharleen Smith. She will guide you through the steps and moves for Salsa, Soca, Calypso and Semba, celebrating Caribbean and African music and dance cultures. Workshops are open to anyone, taking place tonight between 7pm and 8pm or drop in to next week’s class on Zoom at the same time on Tuesday 8th June.

Capture the feel of carnival in your home and get the whole family involved for some energetic fun. Find out more about Cariba Dance here.

Dancehall Kings & Queens, on until Wednesday 9th June

Take part in free online dance classes, learning the iconic Dancehall style from your own home. Workshops are open to anyone over the age of 18, final sessions taking place on Wednesday 2nd and next Wednesday 9th from 7pm to 8pm. Tune in to Zoom to be guided through some of the staple Dancehall steps by Coventry local choreographer Cushitah Ruddock. Learn the energetic Dancehall style from home, celebrating 1970’s Jamaican party culture. 

Find out more about Dancehall Kings & Queens here.

Coventry Poet Laureate and Coventry Young Poet Laureate

As part of the BBC Contains Strong Language Festival Coventry 2021, Coventry UK City of Culture 2021 and Coventry’s Library Service are in search of two poets to represent the city. 

The Coventry Poet Laureate and Coventry Young Poet Laureate honorary posts will be held until the 5th October 2023. Successful applicants for the posts will write poems to commemorate significant occasions, take part in public events, press and media, give performances of their work and encourage an interest in poetry across the city, including taking part in workshops. 

The Coventry Poet Laureate will be offered a place on Writing West Midlands’ prestigious Room 204 Writer Development Programme.

The Coventry Young Poet Laureate will be given free membership of Writing West Midlands’ Spark Young Writers programme.

Find out more here.

Events to mark the run up to the deadline for applications on Monday 19th July begin next weekend;

Coventry Poet Laureate – Be inspired to write and apply with Roy Mcfarlane

Online workshop Saturday 12th June – Saturday 3rd July

Book your free tickets here!

Are you a budding poet? Would you like to be the very first Coventry Poet Laureate? 

The poet Roy McFarlane is running a free, online workshop providing you with plenty of tips for writing poetry about Coventry and more information about the Coventry Poet Laureate programme.

Coventry Welcomes Festival 2021

Monday 14th June – Sunday 20th June

Coventry Welcomes takes part during National Refugee Week, as we celebrate Coventry’s heritage, diversity and traditions. Working with over 30 organisations across the city, Coventry Welcomes Festival will be holding a series of thought provoking events all over Coventry to encourage debate and promote constructive dialogue in our community. Designed to celebrate the diverse range of individuals in Coventry, the different events span across food, literature, poetry, dance, storytelling, workshops, music and much more.

With activities for everyone to enjoy, join the celebration with your loved ones with the events including; talks, debates, comedy, drama, film, theatre, visual arts and much more. Check out events below;

Monday 14th June

Cooking With Mona – Online Workshop at 1pm

Celebrating cooking as a great way to meet new people, make connections and learn about different cultures and languages, join Mona online to learn how to make a scrumptious aubergine dip.

Suitable for all ages and delivered by MiFriendly Cities, book your free tickets here.

No Direction Home – The Box @ Fargo Shopping Village at 7pm

This comedy project created by award winning comedian Tom Parry, Camden People’s Theatre and Counterpoint Arts offers support for new and aspiring comics with a migrant or refugee background. 

Enjoy an evening being entertained by some new voices in comedy; hosted by Coventry born comedian Stella Graham and featuring Yuriko Kontani, Yasmin Moradi, Edin Suljic and headlining Shappi Korsandi!

Pay What You Wish For Tickets here.

Tuesday 15th June

What is Hate Crime? – Online Workshop at 10am

Delivered by West Midlands Police and MiFriendly Cities with Leap, join this online workshop to get engaged in the topic of hate crime; learning how to report it to the police, 111 and online. Book your tickets here.

Still We Rise Podcast Live ; Herbert Art Gallery and Museum

Episode 11 – Tuesday 15th June at 7pm 

Episode 12 – Thursday 17th June at 7pm

The migrant-led community organisation CARAG works to dismantle the hostile immigration structure in the UK, supporting communities to safely settle in the UK and celebrating their success stories.

Join the podcast recording of Still We Rise as a live audience member in Coventry’s Herbert Art Gallery & Museum as they engage in conversation with special guests on the front line of UK Immigration.

Pay What You Wish For Tickets Here.


Wednesday 16th June

Spotting The Signs of Youth Exploitation – Online Workshop at 11am

Delivered by West Midlands Police with Positive Choices, this online workshop is suitable for all ages and explores how young people can be influenced into involving themselves in criminal activities. Exploring how to keep young people safe and where to turn to for support. 

Book Your Free Tickets Here.

Nanjing – Performing Forgiveness – Coventry Cathedral at Noon, 3pm and 7pm

A reconceptualised version of Jude Christian’s play Nanjing as a piece of digital theatre with integrated discussion will encourage the audience to take part. The Coventry born writer and director explores identity, displacement and conflict in his personal responses to the 1937 Nanjing Massacre. 

In person viewing of the film and Q&A will be at noon and 3pm, with a final viewing in person and also available through Zoom at 7pm.

Book Your Free Tickets Here.


Thursday 17th June

Health Champions in Conversation – Online Workshop at 10am

Talking all things health and wellbeing, join this online workshop via Zoom led by Coventry’s Health Champions. Suitable for all ages, book your tickets here.

Blackout Poetry – Online Workshop at 11am

Delivered by Positive Images Festival with Theo Ioannou & Emilie Lauren Jones, this creative workshop is suitable for anyone over the age of 14, who are new to poetry and looking to improve their English language.

An at home workshop, you’ll need a couple of tools to get you started including an old newspaper/magazine, a black marker pen and white correction fluid. You can get your hands on free packs with these materials from The Watch Centre, Hillfields.

The finished poems will be displayed in Ziferblat in Coventry City Centre. Register for your place here.


Friday 18th June

Coventry as Global – Rethinking Migration, Belonging and Sanctuary 

Join The University of Warwick and Coventry University for a conversation between local academics, activists and representatives coming together to discuss the complex history of migration, governance and asylum in the city.

Part of the Resonate Festival, confirmed panelists include: Cllr Kindy Sandhu (Earlsdon), Lorraine Mponela (Coventry Asylum & Refugee Action Group), Reem Doukmak (Coventry Refugee & Migrant Centre). 

Book Your Free Tickets Here.

Home is… Open Mic Live Stream Event at 5pm

Delivered by Positive Youth Foundation, this video features responses from young people, staff and the local community to the question “What is home to you?” Young people perform elements of this for the public through music, spoken word, dance and more. Register your interest here.

The Inini Zine Launch – Herbert Art Gallery & Museum at 7pm

The Inini and Carag Zine Launch will feature articles wholly produced by artists seeking or who have sought sanctuary in Coventry, showcasing their gifts and talents. Working with the talented illustrator Majid Adin, join others at Coventry’s Herbert Art Gallery & Museum to enjoy the launch of the Inini Zine. A free light supper will also be included for this event.

Pay What You Wish For Tickets Here.


Saturday 19th June

The BundleSt Peter’s Centre, Coventry at 2pm

Journeymen Theatre with Coventry Refugee & Migrant Centre present this story closely based on the real life of a woman and her three children. Watch The Bundle at Coventry’s St Peter’s Centre as you follow Adilah’s domestic persecution and struggle for human rights. Removed from her Russian homeland by her Chechen father, abducted into a forced marriage and then subjected to a life of servitude, she takes the ultimate risk in plotting her escape to the UK. Here she finds a home but also encounters the Home Office’s ‘hostile environment’. A post-show discussion will be held after the performance. 

Book Your Free Tickets Here.


Rewind – Belgrade Theatre B2 at 7.30pm

This 30 minute physical theatre performance has been adapted from fact-based stories of resistance and inspired by testimonies from refugees whose lives were affected by dictatorship in Latin America in the 1970s. REWIND is a largely non-verbal work-in-progress, which will be followed by a post-show discussion.

Presented as part of the University of Warwick’s Resonate Festival with Belgrade Theatre Coventry, proud to be a Theatre of Sanctuary.

Book your free tickets here.


Sunday 20th June

Can You Hear Me, Now? – Swanswell Park and Pool at 1pm

Stand and Be Counted Theatre present this large scale outdoor and immersive performance. Featuring live music, dance, storytelling and spoken word. 

Commissioned by Coventry City of Culture Trust, in partnership with Belgrade Theatre and Coventry Refugee and Migrant Centre, Stand and Be Counted is the UK’s very first Theatre Company of Sanctuary; campaigning theatre which promotes unity and social change. Empowering audiences to have their say and working with people seeking sanctuary in the city, Stand and Be Counted will be an immersive experience made with and for the people of Coventry!

Book Your Free Tickets Here.

I am Kalam (PG): An Evening of Film, Food and Talk – Cheylesmore Community Centre at 6pm

Join Cheylesmore Community Centre and Sahyadri Friends for an evening of food, discussion and film. Watch I am Khalam directed by Nila Madhab Panda and eat some delicious, authentic vegetarian food. I Am Khalam is an uplifting story of a young boy inspired by the life of India’s president who overcame poverty.

Book your free tickets here.

She Cannot Walk Alone – Online Workshop at 7pm

Coventry is reclaiming the streets. This online exhibition turns the spotlight on the streets of Coventry. Delivered by Maokwo and Laura Nyahuye, we are able to look through the eyes of a woman seeking refuge or asylum. How can we walk alongside her?

Sign up here to register your place on the livestream.

#lAmHer #SheCannotWalkAlone 


Monday 21st June

We are searching for life – Online Panel Discussion at 2pm

Delivered by The University of Warwick, join an online screening of a short film of a poem created by Salma Zulfiqar which was inspired by the University’s research project Crossing the Mediterranean Sea by Boat. Also exploring stories with refugees seeking safety in Europe, there will be an opportunity to take part in a discussion about the issues.

Book you free tickets here.


Tuesday 22nd June

Observations of Being, London Road Cemetery

Tickets available to visit between Tuesday 22nd June to Sunday 15th August 

Held at London Road Cemetery and presented in partnership with Warwickshire Wildlife Trust, Coventry City Council and Historic Coventry Trust, Observations of Being is an immersive exhibit by Marshmallow Laser Feast.

Moving in small groups throughout Paxton’s Arboretum within the cemetery ground, you will explore a number of outdoor installations that have been developed alongside writers, musicians and ecologists for a multisensory experience.

Each installation in the series will invite you to experience visual arts, music and poetic storytelling revealing the many hidden layers of Coventry’s most beautiful setting.

Exploring our relationship with the natural world, the energy of the cosmos and nature’s connections across the beautiful planet, you will be taken on an incredible and out of the ordinary multisensory experience discovering the connections between all living beings.

Tickets are £12 and available here. Book your time slot to enjoy this incredible exhibit on throughout the summer.

Building Community Resilience Amid the Pandemic: a Research-Art Response – Panel talk at 6pm

Last year’s research project Re-integrate, carried out by Coventry University and The University of Warwick explored the integration experiences of refugees and host communities in the midst of the pandemic. This online event will showcase the products of subsequent art workshops and look at the resilience and integration experiences of those individuals and their host communities as lockdown measures are eased.

Book your free tickets here.


Thursday 24th June

Radford Bubbles – Thursday 24th June to Saturday 24th July

Kicking off on Thursday 24th and on for the next month, Coventry Uk City of Culture Trust are inviting Radford Residents and their support bubbles to Jubilee Crescent Community Centre. Head down over the next month to have your photograph taken by a group of community photographers led by Portrait photographer Fran Monks in a purpose built studio.

Photos are free for you to keep and could also feature in an upcoming exhibition for Radford Bubbles.

Book your free photo session here or you can call Jubilee Crescent Community Centre on 02476 595 790.


Friday 25th June

Conversation Cafe – Online Workshop at 10.30am

Delivered by Coventry Library Services, join an online workshop with Library staff for individuals to enjoy a free informal practice session of ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages). This is a perfect opportunity for people studying ESOL to practice their spoken English.

Book your tickets here.

Exploring Coventry’s Linguistic Landscape – Online Panel Discussion at 2pm

Delivered by The University of Warwick, join this online panel discussion exploring the linguistic diversity within Coventry. The Migration, Identity and Translation Network, in partnership with translator Rosalind Harvey showcase work exploring languages, migration and translation in Coventry culture.

Following the film, an interview will be held with Rosalind Harvey discussing the diversity of language in Coventry Market and the lives of the diverse range of stallholders. This will be followed by Q&A from the public.

Book your free tickets here.

We are Warriors; African Cultural Night – Coventry University at 6pm

Join Coventry University for an evening celebrating African culture and heritage, with live performances of music, traditional dance and poetry. The programme features exciting and energetic performances. 

Get your free tickets here.

More information available at



Feile 2021 – Friday 25th June to Sunday 27th June

Broadcast live from venues across Coventry, join the Irish community for a weekend of music, dance, storytelling and more.

On Friday 25th, tune in for an evening of Irish folk music broadcast live from Coventry’s Albany Theatre. Featuring BBC Radio 2 Folk award winning Michael McGoldrick, Dezi Donnelly & Ed Boyd and more. Watch on Facebook or YouTube between 7pm and 9.45pm

At 10.30pm, broadcast from Earlsdon’s Four Provinces, enjoy traditional music from DJ Paddy Callaghan until midnight. 

Saturday 26th June will be host to a range of hour long online workshops focusing on Irish culture.

The Gaelic Athletics Association is among many of the Irish organisations from Coventry that will be showcasing in the workshops. Expect features on Irish sport, Coventry’s Irish dancing schools, Irish folk music, baking and song. Crafting tin whistles will also be a part of the many projects available that day. Bookings will be available online at a closer date, so keep your eyes peeled.

At 8pm, join forces with those in your community to create a world record for the largest Irish online gathering. Tune in for live music, dancing and storytelling from Coventry residents championing Irish culture in our community. Broadcast live from Christ the King Parish Centre, you can watch on Facebook or YouTube.

Marking the end of Feile 2021, Sunday 27th June brings the All Britain Finals for this year’s online Comhaltas Competition. Starting at 1pm, tune in on Facebook or YouTube to enjoy an afternoon packed full of talent. Talents include whistling, dance, storytelling and music.

Whatever your background, there is something for everyone to enjoy at this year’s Feile 2021 celebrations.


No Direction Home – Tin Music And Arts, Friday 25th June to Sunday 27th 

Stella Graham is back to host another night of comedy showcasing standup comedians from refugee and migrant backgrounds. 

The No Direction Home standup programme has mentored individuals in Coventry to create this unique project raising awareness and changing perceptions of refugees and migrants. 

Also on the line up are the following headliners;

Fatiha El-Ghorri (25 June), 

Rosie Jones (26 June) 


Nish Kumar (27 June).

Pay what you wish for tickets here.

Art installations and visual displays will be available to view across Coventry and online during National Refugee Week;

What does it mean to be a Refugee?  – Longford Park Primary School 

Zatoboua and I Never Walk Alone / Out in the UK – West Midlands Police pop-up museum, 26 Hertford Street  

Putting the Flags Out for Coventry Welcomes – Carriers of Hope, City Arcade            

Various work from Positive Images Festival – Ziferblat CV1 3BB 

The University of Warwick will be hosting three online galleries as part of The Resonate Festival, celebrating the power of creativity, conversation and connection. Visit them online here.

Everyone’s Coventry – Available From 16th June

An exhibition showcasing the skills and talents of young people aged 16-19 who are seeking sanctuary in Coventry.  

Re/Making Home – Available from 17th June

An online art exhibition on the theme of Home which includes visual artwork created by people from Coventry and the surrounding area who have lived experiences of sanctuary.

For more updates on Coventry UK City of Culture events, newly announced events and more follow their social media links below.





Written by Heather Marie Willis