Germander Speedwell is an irrepressible collector of strange names and curious terms, which she arranges into playful or evocative spoken word pieces, packed with plosives, littered with alliteration, saturated with assonance and riddled with rhythm. In 2007-8 she explored the Thames Estuary and wrote a collection of pieces on the area's place names, shipping movements and bird sightings. She has also written pieces on mudlarking findings, dockyard language, and fishermen's terminology from the Thames. She has worked as a writer-in-residence in a shipping container, a charity shop, and a city farm, and has led a Heritage Lottery Fund project to uncover the history of a former Docklands site. Germander's absurdly wide range of interests include ship spotting, frog watching, pipe finding and bike riding, and both etymology and entomology.
'Kiddles, Spits, Nipperkins and Willocks: Lists of Language from the Thames Estuary' talk at Shorelines: Germander will read from her collection of carefully collated lists of things found in the Thames Estuary - from shipping movements to bird sighting reports, fishermen's language to place names, and will tell some of the stories behind her findings.