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New funding to support UK and Ireland PEN centre collaboration in 2022

Scottish PEN is delighted to announce that our recent bid to the Four Nations International Fund has been successful.

January 27, 2022

Scottish PEN is delighted to announce that our recent bid to the Four Nations International Fund has been successful. This funding will support regular collaboration between four PEN centres in 2022: Scottish PEN, English PEN, Irish PEN/ PEN na hÉireann and Wales PEN Cymru.

The Four Nations International Fund is a pilot fund with co-investment from Arts Council EnglandArts Council Northern IrelandArts Council Wales/Wales Arts International and Creative Scotland.

The project will support regular online meetings between the UK and Ireland centres and see all four partners collaborate in the hope of hosting events, sharing new campaign materials, and spotlighting the work of writers at risk in the UK, Ireland and around the world.

Responding to the decision, Ricky Monahan Brown, President of Scottish PEN, said:

‘This funding will support important dialogue between UK nations and allow a unique opportunity to respond to current threats to free expression in the UK. We look forward to combining our varied expertise, membership bases and campaigning platforms to shine a spotlight on the issues affecting writers today. We hope that this one-year period will spark a continued partnership that will benefit writers across the UK and Ireland’.

Daniel Gorman, Director of English PEN, said:

‘English PEN is delighted to join this project. As a centre we are committed to collaboration and internationalism within our work in literature. This project will allow us to formalise this working to ensure information is shared and opportunities to collaborate are developed further. Having the chance to discuss priorities on a regular basis, and discuss key questions around freedom of expression and creative freedom with our colleagues across the UK and Ireland will be of huge and significant use to us’.

Lia Mills, Chair of Irish PEN/PEN na hÉireann, said:

‘Within Ireland, North and South, Irish PEN is committed to inclusivity and co-operation and we very much welcome this opportunity to forge and strengthen links with the other PEN Centres on these we develop our work in the area of freedom of expression. The co-operation of our Centres will give us all access to writers in different languages and forms which will aid our aim to promote literature and understanding across frontiers’.

Elin Jones, Chair of Wales PEN Cymru said:

‘We very much welcome the opportunities this collaboration could offer as we aim to further develop our work in sustainable ways that can bring benefit to diverse communities at home and internationally. We believe that we can achieve even more through joint work that will bring benefit to each of our communities, engage our members, develop audiences, enhance mutual understanding across cultures and raise awareness of the challenges faced by writers across the world’.

Updates on the project will be shared on our website throughout 2022. If you have any questions please email