Current Bard (2019): Melanie Crump

Melanie is the founder and creative director of Riviera Writing, a literary organisation based in Torbay. She recently had a local history book on the struggle and suffrage of women published and have been performing poetry around the south west for over a decade. Melanie also hosts OrateOracle, a regular spoken word event, has worked in local festivals and conferences and was previously a committee member for Torbay Poetry Festival. She is passionate about using creative writing for health and well-being and often deliver workshops and poetry sessions in community mental health settings.


credit – Nigel Cheffers-Heard

Current Grand Bard (2019): Kimwei McCarthy

Kimwei is a unique performer with passion for the Bardic arts. As well as being a singer-songwriter, he has composed and performed soundtracks for local storytellers and taken part in poetry slams. For the last decade, Kimwei has been involved in the Exeter performance scene and organised spoken word, music and mixed discipline events. With a broad foundation in both music and words Kimwei is an ideal choice for Bard.

Website: kimwei.com

Previous Bards:

  • 2018: Kimwei McCarthy
  • 2017: Chris White
  • 2016: Robert Sean Casey
  • 2015: Mantie Lister
  • 2014: Daniel Haynes
  • 2013: Simon Williams
  • 2012: Jackie Juno & Clive Pig
  • 2011: Jon Freeman
  • 2010: Liv Torc

Grand Bard (2013-19): Jackie Juno

Jackie is a formidable force for magic, weaving it through many mediums, from poetry to song. As a spoken word artist she has won many slams including the official Glastonbury Festival Slam (2017), Green Gathering (2016) and Plymouth Lit Fest (2017), as well as reaching the finals of the National Poetry Slam (Albert Hall, 2018). In music, she is the lead singer of The Invisible Opera Company of Tibet – psychedelic deep space rock band, a Gong satellite band.  Jackie is also an artist, celebrant and creator of Goddess Workshops. Her work as Grand Bard has been far reaching, its centerpiece being The Grand Witches Tea Party.

Website: jackiejuno.com

Bardic Chair Originally Reclaimed by Mark Linsey-Earley in 2006

After serving as the 7th Bard of Bath (2002-3), Mark moved to Exeter and reclaimed the bardic chair. He first conceived the idea of a bardic website (for Bath) saying “Hey, you have to move with the times.” Mark is very passionate about the wider Bardic Revivalist Movement and can boast the rare feat of having held the title of Bardic Chair, Ovation Chair and Druid Chair. His principle vocation is healing (psychotherapy) and his classical influenced poetry mixed with quirky humour is described as ‘Roger McGothic.’(Taken from The Book of The Bardic Chair, Kevan Manwaring)

Facebook Profile: marklindsey.earley