Iron Press

Eclectic IRON, a Seaside Festival of Words, Music & Oddities Millie and Bird Short not Sweet Limerick Nation Pieces from Eight
Welcome to the home of IRON Press

Publisher Peter Mortimer (right) welcoming visitors at the new IRON Press gate.

Gate made by John Charlton, Original logo design by Geoff Laws.
Photo by Dylan Mortimer

As publishers become more corporate, global and boring, IRON Press champions new quality writing as it has done since 1973. IRON runs events and launches; it also thinks literature is both serious and fun.


We've had a few questions about how to book tickets for Eclectic IRON. To see the Full programme - and it is a very full programme! - and how to book click on the image of the Festival Brochure below.

Eclectic IRON, a Seaside Festival of Words, Music & Oddities


Following the roaring success of the 2013 IRON AGE Festival, which won Best Event Tyneside Award in The Journal Culture Awards 2014 and was described by writer David Almond as "the best festival I've ever read at" (and he's read at a lot globally), we're delighted to announce Eclectic IRON - a Festival of Words, Music & Oddities. Full programme - and it is a very full programme! - and how to book now published.

The Festival will take place at six different venues facing onto the beautiful Cullercoats Bay from Thursday June 4 to Sunday June 7, 2015 and once again there's a heady mix of the famous, the grass-roots, the curious and the downright bizarre.

We're delighted that Tony Harrison, one of Britain and Europe's most acclaimed poets will give a rare reading on Tyneside. Leading North East crime novelist Ann Cleeves will both perform her work and also help several aspiring authors to write their own perfect Cullercoats murder novel - aided by an actual body and various other items. Colette Bryce, poet and erstwhile writer-in-residence at Cullercoats Dove Marine Laboratory will also appear.

Drama comes with Peter Mortimer's short new satire Fracking in Cullercoats, which opens the festival and is performed by drama pupils from Marden High School, Cullercoats. A Baiku Event will see a 20 mile bike ride along the coast followed by a haiku workshop under the guiding hand of David Bateman.

Label design for Eclectic IRON Ale, courtesy of Cullercoats Brewery

Our Writer on a Rock project will see one brave scribbler spending two three hour sessions perched on a low tide rock armed only with lo-tec writing implements. Will the sessions produce a masterpiece or just a soggy notebook? Authors brave enough to apply get in touch. Only those with a published track record please.

We will launch at our Salt House late-night Festival Club, the CD Coast Buskers, music from one dozen talented musical artists who regularly keep the local buskers scene so vibrant; three artists to perform every night. And for the occasion we shall have our own Festival beer, courtesy of Cullercoats Brewery. Cheers!

Plus a Book Fair, several other musicians, readings from IRON Press authors Liz Brownlee, Vicky Arthurs, Avril Joy and Lisa Rodgers, two ukelele bands, a talk on the Cullercoats Artists Colony, a Cullercoats quilt embroidered specially for the festival and an event featuring the three best aspiring novelists over 50 to come through several months workshops run by Cullercoats authors Carol Clewlow and Kitty Fitzgerald, and a documentary film on the 2013 Festival.

Plus a special event built round the recent IRON Press anthology, Limerick Nation - the UK in Verse.

All in four days - all round little old Cullercoats Bay!

The ECLECTIC IRON Festival is supported by Arts Council England, New Writing North, Inpress Ltd and North Tyneside Council.

Millie and Bird

short stories by Avril Joy

Pictures from the launch party

Collage: Wendy Robertson

Iron Press celebrated its latest publication, Millie and Bird, short stories by Avril Joy (winner of the 2012 Costa Short Story prize), with a launch party at Teiku University of Japan, Durham, on March 20th. More than 50 people attended.

Read more about Millie and Bird


Eight exciting stories
from eight North East writers

Eight new North-East writers developed their stories through a series of writing workshops led at Newcastle Central Library by IRON Press editor Peter Mortimer and Red Squirrel editor Sheila Wakefield.

A mysterious hotel guest books in for an unknown future funeral, a bizarre erotic encounter takes place in a public toilet, a character's life seems determined by the colour purple, two young lads set out on a mission of destructive arson, a woman's journey unlocks a buried childhood secret, a prankish student trip brings terrible consequences, a living house breathes and thinks, a daughter struggles to break free of maternal ties - these are the plotlines of eight new stories from North East writers.

Short not Sweet, published by Red Squirrel and Iron Press at the Books on Tyne Festival, November 2014.

More about Short not Sweet

Limerick Nation

Attempting to rescue the poetic form from its low literary reputation

IRON Press challenged poets from around the British Isles to 'write a limerick about where you live (no cheating!)' More than sixty poets responded, so each of the limericks is inspired by the writer's place of residence. This is normally the town, but several writers have shown ingenuity and rhymed their district, their street name or even their postcode! Many of the limericks pinpoint a particular cultural, topographical or historical peculiarity of their locale.

Read more about Limerick Nation, and find out what rhymes with Leicester.


Another company is using the name Iron Press, and this company is publishing a range of books aimed at young children. Many of these books contain basic and atrocious spelling errors, and we are regularly chastised for such sloppy work. The company has no link whatsoever to ourselves and is based in Bleasby, Nottinghamshire. Our own IRON Press, which has been publishing since 1973, is not a publisher of children's books. All our publications contain our full postal and email address, web site and phone number, plus our own flatiron logo.

Submissions - No unsolicited submissions please. We are a small press. We do not publish novels. Our range is poetry, (including haiku), collections of short stories, and anthologies of verse and prose. If you think you have something that might interest us, firstly email us with brief details. Thanks!

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