In May 1971, a young English teacher named Chris Searle, was sacked for publishing a book of his students' poems, 'Stepney Words'. A week later 800 school students came out on strike and marched through the City of London to Trafalgar Square. The 'Stepney Words' poems were reprinted in national newspapers and became famous. The poets were invited to read their poems at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, the Young Vic, at Poetry International and on radio and television.
To celebrate its 10 year anniversary the Shoreditch contemporary art centre Rich Mix, partnered with England's leading performance poetry organisation, Apples and Snakes to run a poetry project with schools in Tower Hamlets and produce this volume of 'Stepney Words III'. Chris Searle together with poets; Caleb Femi, Maria Ferguson, Cecilia Knapp and Talia Randall led workshops with students from George Green's School, Green Spring Academy Shoreditch, Langdon Park School and Morpeth School to explore what has changed in Tower Hamlets since the 1970's and what hasn't. The book has a foreword by Chris Searle and is illustrated with 40 photographs by Ron McCormick, both of whom were involved in the original 1971 publications.