Ghosts at the Old Library

Sarah-Clare Conlon, Literature Editor
Writer Nicholas Royle. Photo by Zoe McLean
Writer Nicholas Royle. Photo by Zoe McLean

Ghosts at the Old Library at Levenshulme Old Library, Levenshulme 2 — 16 December 2023 Tickets from £10 — Book now

Levenshulme Old Library has commissioned brand-new festive ghost stories from six fiction writers – Marie Crook, Jo Howard, Gaynor Jones, Lauren O’Donoghue, Nicholas Royle and Dyani Sheppard – for a special atmospheric reading event.

Ghost stories at Christmas have long been a storytelling tradition and, for three nights only (2, 9 and 16 December, all 8-10pm), you can come and hear the tales read in full at an immersive performance at this historic local landmark in South Manchester. Each of the events will have a unique line-up of four of the six writers.

Making effective use of the building, the venue will be dimly illuminated by lantern light on three December nights. The writers will each be assigned a different space, and the audience will be guided around the building, listening to an intimate performance of each story before being led to the next room. The stories themselves will respond to the venue and its heritage as well as the local area and its history, and this project aims to create an unsettling atmosphere  – so be warned!

Based in Levenshulme, Marie Crook’s work has been published by creative nonfiction journal The Real Story, The Caterpillar magazine and Confingo, among others, and she runs the creative writing workshop series Feed the Fox. Gaynor Jones is the author of Among These Animals. She has won the Northern Writers’ Award, the Bath Flash Fiction Prize and the Mairtín Crawford Short Story Award, among others. Jo Howard is a writer of children’s and young adult fiction and a poet, singer and scriptwriter. Jo runs Book Jive Live, a Zoom open mic for kidlit and YA. Her work has been published in Confingo, The Writer’s Cafe and Funny Pearls magazines and in the 100 Voices anthology. Lauren O’Donoghue is a writer from South Yorkshire whose fiction has been published in ergot and Mslexia among others. Nicholas Royle is the author of five collections of short fiction, two works of nonfiction and seven novels, most recently First Novel. He edits the Salt Publishing Best British Short Stories annual series of anthologies and runs Nightjar Press which publishes original short stories. Dyani Sheppard is a writer based in Manchester.

Levenshulme Old Library is one of the famous Carnegie libraries (others nearby include Didsbury and Chorlton), funded by the philanthropist Andrew Carnegie to offer knowledge and opportunity to local residents. It operated as a free public library from 1904 until 2013 when the council announced they were cutting the service. After the library closed, members of the public took over the running of the space, establishing the charity Levenshulme Old Library CIO to renovate and maintain the library building, support the local community and establish meaningful artistic opportunities for people in Levenshulme via an ongoing arts programme.

The stories will also be printed as limited-edition Christmas card chapbooks, available to pre-order for when booking tickets. Perfect for stocking fillers…

The event line-ups are planned as follows: 2 December: Marie Crook, Jo Howard, Gaynor Jones, Dyani Sheppard; 9 December: Jo Howard, Gaynor Jones, Lauren O’Donoghue, Nicholas Royle; 16 December: Marie Crook, Lauren O’Donoghue, Nicholas Royle, Dyani Sheppard.

 

Ghosts at the Old Library
Ghosts at the Old Library

Ghosts at the Old Library at Levenshulme Old Library, Levenshulme 2 — 16 December 2023 Tickets from £10 Book now

Performances

Date
Time
Session Features
2 December 2023
8:00pm — 10:00pm
9 December 2023
8:00pm — 10:00pm
16 December 2023
8:00pm — 10:00pm

Always double check opening hours with the venue before making a special visit.

Where to go near Ghosts at the Old Library

Levenshulme
Restaurant
Station Hop

Cosy, colourful bar in Levenshulme. Station Hop is an independent tap house and bottle shop, located close to Levenshulme station.

Levenshulme
Bar or Pub
Isca Wines

An intimate and well-stocked wine bar at the heart of Levenshulme that plays host to a range of quality workshops and food-based events.

Bankley Studios and Gallery Manchester
Levenshulme
Gallery
Bankley Studios and Gallery Manchester

Bankley Studios and Gallery is an artist-run gallery space and artists studios in Levenshulme, Manchester. It currently houses over 30 artists working across a range of disciplines including painting, textiles, photography, installation, sculpture and ceramics.

Manchester
Restaurant
Cibus Pizza

High-quality Italian food in Levenshulme, with friendly staff and an ever-changing but always excellent menu.

Levenshulme
Shopping Centre
Levenshulme Market

One of the best in the city, Levenshulme Market brings new businesses, arts and lots of delicious food to a carpark in Levenshulme on a weekly basis.

Manchester
Restaurant
Station South

Station South is a cycle cafe, bar, bike workshop and urban garden based in Levenshulme, based on the site of an old railway station.

Levenshulme Antiques Village
Levenshulme
Shop
Levenshulme Antiques Village

The Antiques Village in Levenshulme is a regional hypermarket where many dealers buy and sell antiques, pre-war and vintage furniture, fireplaces and collectables.

Bopcap Books
Manchester
Shop
Bopcap Books

This indie bookseller is run by husband-and-wife team Ian and Suzy out of Levenshulme Old Police Station.

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