Writers and poets

The playwright and actor Alfred Fagon was born in 1937 on the Caribbean island of Jamaica. He came to Britain, and spent some years in Bristol. Sadly, Fagon died of a heart attack aged only 49 in 1986. He was in the prime of his career, having written and acted for the theatre, radio and television. Fagon wrote the plays, 11 Josephine House, The Death of a Blackman, Four Hundred Pounds, Lonely Cowboy. One play Shakespeare Country was produced by BBC2. There is now a bronze statue to Fagon’s memory, sculpted by David G. Mutasa and commissioned by the Friends of Fagon Committee. It stands on the green at the junction of Ashley Road and Grosvenor Road in the St Pauls area of Bristol. There is also an Alfred Fagon Award, funded by the Peggy Ramsay Foundation, set up in his honour. Applications are invited by writers from the Caribbean or with Caribbean antecedents for the best new play (which need not have been produced) for the theatre in English. The first Alfred Fagon Award was presented in 1997 and is given annually. Previous winners have been: Roy Williams, Shenagh Cameron, Sheila White, Grant Buchanan-Marshall, Adeshegun Ikoli, Linda Brogan and Penny Marshall.

Bristol Black Writers Group, based at Kuumba Project, in St Pauls, is a group for black writers in the Bristol area. The group publishes a monthly newsletter and holds performance groups and workshops. Members from the group, such as Bertel Martin and Edson Burton perform in various venues around Bristol.