Grow Local, Grow Vocal

Thu 4 Feb 2021


Calling all Poets & Lovers of Local Produce...

Together Artsreach and Dorset Food & Drink are seeking to commission a poet to help us celebrate Dorset’s outstanding local food and drink producers, and to acknowledge those who choose to shop local.

Dorset is well known for being home to some of the UK’s most outstanding local food and drink producers, and many of these are embedded within communities across the county who partner with Artsreach, the counties rural touring arts charity. Grow Local, Grow Vocal is a new initiative that aims to creatively celebrate these producers, and the community residents who choose to shop local, particularly since the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The commissioned poet will receive a fee of £300 to compose a poem in any form, which will then be printed on postcards, and distributed through a variety of networks across Dorset including food delivery boxes/orders from Dorset Food & Drink producers.

When Covid restrictions allow, a second fee will be given for the commissioned poet to perform the poem on the doorstep of customers receiving deliveries from Dorset Food & Drink Producers, over a pre-agreed number of days, as a small gesture to combat the loneliness experienced. A short film of the commissioned poet performing the poem will also be captured as part of the project.

Download the Full Commission Brief


  • Application deadline EXTENDED: 6pm Monday 1st March
  • Commissions offered: by Friday 5th March
  • Delivery of final poem: Monday 15th March
  • Distributed to food producers: week commencing 22 March and ongoing

How to Apply

If you would like to be considered for this commission, please submit your CV along with two poems (ideally one written and one read/performed as video or audio), and also a short statement of 300 words maximum about your interest in this commission and why it appeals to you.

Applications should be sent to

We welcome and encourage applications from people from a wide range of backgrounds.

If you have access requirements, please let us know in your application. If you’d prefer this application information in an alternative format, please get in touch by email to


If you have further questions, please email the Artsreach team via

Find out more about Dorset Food and Drink

This idea is inspired by a project developed through the Cultivate hub by our rural touring colleagues Take Art in Somerset. Cultivate aims to bring local food, arts and people together.Before Christmas, Cultivate commissioned Poet and Actor, David Reakes from Tor Theatre to write a poem around the food story of buying local, thinking local and thanking the community for shopping in their local farm shops and businesses.

Find out more about this project here