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Annual Report

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1 April 2010 31 March 2011

Welcome This year English PENs numbers told their own story International Working from England to support a world of writers Inviting Welcoming all readers and writers into our community Innovative Building imaginatively on our historic foundations Inspirational Bringing about real change through dedicated work Independent Working in partnership towards a distinctive vision Fundraising activities Future developments Summary financial statement Balance Sheet Income Account Expenses Account Independent auditors statement to the Trustees of English PEN English PEN People




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Gillian Slovo, President

Its been an extraordinary year since I took on the English PEN Presidency from Lisa Appignanesi in December 2010. The Government has met our demands for libel reform with a draft Bill that meets many of the conditions set out in the PEN/Index report, Free Speech is not for Sale. Large numbers of writers have been released from prisons around the world. Our Writers in Translation programme has brought some wonderful authors to the United Kingdom whilst our Readers & Writers programme has taken British authors into migrant and refugee communities and prisons across this country. Our events programme has been rich and varied; our prizes have gone to some wonderful writers both established voices and newcomers and we have launched a new programme of free speech night classes. And, crucially, our successful fundraising has put English PENs finances onto a stronger footing. All this is documented in this Annual Report. Reading it now makes me very proud of our achievements, but conscious that theres so much more to be done. Ive also realised this year how much work Lisa did, quietly, behind the scenes. We have a wonderful team of staff at English PEN. But as President and Chair of an elected Board I am responsible for ensuring that our members are at the heart of what we do. This means attending a range of meetings, some fascinating such as the roundtable on the freedom to write in Sri Lanka others more humdrum. But even when I am being asked to approve a column of figures that makes my eyes water, I am reminded of the very real world out there, in which PENs work, and PENs voice, is more needed than ever. I hope that when you read here of our achievements you will agree that English PEN, at ninety, is in great shape to meet future challenges with your support.

This year English PENs numbers told their own story

We marked the fifth anniversary of the Writers in Translation programme and the fiftieth anniversary of the Writers in Prison Committee and we began to celebrate the ninetieth anniversary of PENs foundation. The aim of these celebrations was not to look backwards, but to use our historic impact as an inspiration for future achievements promoting the freedom to write, and the freedom to read. Thanks to PENs increased efforts, an unprecedented number of writers were released from prisons around the world this year. At the same time, we held more workshops for readers and writers than ever before; we published more books, magazines and pamphlets than in any previous year; our following on social media grew exponentially; and we held a range of fascinating events in London and around the country. All this was possible because of the extraordinary commitment of our staff, trustees, volunteers, members and donors. Their work has been recognised by Arts Council England, who announced at the end of the year that our grant will rise to 230,000 in April 2012 the highest uplift in the literature sector.

These big numbers tell a big story about an organisation that continues to drive forward its historic mission. Since the evening in 1921 when a group of writers came together under the leadership of Amy Dawson Scott and John Galsworthy, PEN has grown steadily. Today we have 144 centres in 104 countries, of which English PEN is proud to be the founding centre. In December 2010, Gillian Slovo was elected English PENs twenty-fifth President, taking our story confidently into the future

Campaigns Manager Robert Sharp addresses a rally for Burmese poet Zarganar in Trafalgar Square

English PEN members write to the imprisoned former President of the Independent Chinese PEN Centre, Nobel Laureate Liu Xiaobo. Photo: Cat Lucas


Working from England to support a world of writers

PEN began campaigning on behalf of imprisoned writers in 1960

Half a century later, we continued raising awareness of their plight through public events and writers roundtables for instance on Sri Lanka, ahead of the Galle Literary Festival in 2011. Members of the Writers in Prison Committee and the Books to Prisoners Committee sent hundreds of letters and parcels to writers around the world. Thanks to the Prisoners of Conscience Fund, we gave financial support to writers and their families in Azerbaijan and helped British author Alan Shadrake imprisoned in Singapore with his medical bills. We also continued to lobby foreign governments and the Foreign & Commonwealth Office, where English PEN sits on the Freedom of Expression panel. And many imprisoned writers were released this year, including 22 who had been imprisoned in Cuba since the Black Spring crackdown of March 2003. In Egypt the blogger Kareem Amer was released in November 2010 in the build-up to the Arab Spring. And in Uzbekistan, journalist Muhammad Bekzhon (Bekjanov) was reportedly released in March 2011. English PENs Writers in Translation Committee complements our Writers in Prison Committee by introducing English-language readers to the wealth of contemporary world writing. We believe that translated literature can build bridges between writers and readers around the world, leading to a powerful sense of shared humanity.

This year, we awarded grants to eight outstanding books from around the world, including Three Sisters by the award-winning Chinese author Bi Feiyu; Beirut 39: New Writing from the Arab World, edited by Samuel Shimon; Dreams in a Time of War by the great Kenyan ~ ~ novelist Ngugi wa Thiongo; and Beauty and the Inferno by the courageous Italian journalist Roberto Saviano. Together, the Writers in Prison Committee and the Writers in Translation Committee provide a powerful connection between writers and readers in this country and their fellows around the world

English PEN Director Jonathan Heawood speaks at the PEN/Pinter Prize 2010, awarded to Hanif Kureishi and the courageous Mexican journalist Lydia Cacho. Photo: James Darling

Welcoming all readers and writers into our community
English PEN is the founding centre of a worldwide fellowship that includes not only writers but also readers. Our membership continues to grow, with new student PEN centres at Kings College London and the University of Surrey, and a busy programme of members events featuring leading writers in discussion. Philip Pullman, Jachym Topol, Zadie Smith, Philip Hensher, China Mieville, Alberto Manguel and David Lodge were among the many speakers this year at the Free Word Centre. Meanwhile, our Readers & Writers programme produced 105 workshops in refugee centres, prisons and schools, bringing the freedom to write and the freedom to read to more than 500 people. In London, we held workshops at Praxis (Tower Hamlets), the Tricycle Theatre (Brent), Migrants Resource Centre (Westminster) and the Migrant and Refugee Communities Forum (Kensington & Chelsea). Guest writers included Inua Ellams, John Hegley, Pascale Petit, Karen McCarthy Woolf and Fiona Sampson, who expanded the literary horizons of participants from around the world, leading to some exciting new writing that we published in a series of beautiful pamphlets.

A young participant at a Readers & Writers workshop at the Tricycle Theatre. The Stories of Different Countries was published in Spring 2011. Photo: Anna Myers

Meanwhile, we sent writers including Mark Haddon, Meg Rosoff, Adania Shibli, Ian Marchant, Jake Arnott and Alex Wheatle into British prisons, where they helped offenders to develop new skills of creative reading and writing. We gave a public platform to this work with an event featuring Wilbert Rideau and Erwin James in January 2011. And we introduced a free speech strand of Readers & Writers, featuring a graphic exploration of George Orwells Nineteen Eighty-Four with young people from Islington, and a series of night classes in partnership with the Bishopsgate Institute. Many participants in these workshops have remained involved with English PEN, becoming part of our growing community of readers and writers

Innovative Building imaginatively on our historic foundations

In this year of anniversaries we paid tribute to those writers who have paid the highest price for free speech. The publication of Beyond Bars in December 2010 marked fifty years of the Writers in Prison Committee with essays and memoirs by leading authors and activists and an account of fifty key cases from the last half century. Launched at the Free Word Centre with a powerful installation of prisoners letters shaped into paper aeroplanes, Beyond Bars was praised in The Observer and elsewhere. The publication formed the basis for a travelling exhibition, featuring ten of our most significant cases, which has built support for PENs work across the country. Meanwhile, content from Beyond Bars and video contributions from writers such as the former President of Kenyan PEN Philo Ikonya are available on the English PEN website as part of our growing online presence. We posted more than 100 bulletins on the website this year, and established a Facebook page with more than 400 likes. We also used the English PEN Twitter feed, with more than 4,000 followers, to share information on our cases, and Flickr and YouTube to post photographs and videos. In another innovation, we published a series of translated stories via a smartphone app, in partnership with Ether Books. The pieces were extracted from Making the World Legible, edited by Julian Evans, a sampler of all the books supported by Writers in Translation, distributed to bookshops including Foyles and Daunts and libraries in partnership with The Reading Agency.


In order to strengthen our work on behalf of literary translation, we have worked with Free Word on the Global Translation Initiative, an analysis of the translation market across the English-speaking world; we programmed a range of talks at the Literary Translation Centre at the London Book Fair; and we co-hosted the first ever International Translation Day. These projects have generated some exciting new ideas, including the translation fund which English PEN will launch with Arts Council England in April 2012, allowing us to support publishers of literary translation more strategically and systematically

Philo Ikonya, President of Kenyan PEN, speaking at the launch of Beyond Bars: Fifty Years of the PEN Writers in Prison Committee. Photo: Saskia Schmidt


Bringing about real change through dedicated work
Since 2009, English PEN, Index on Censorship and Sense about Science have been calling for reform of Englands libel laws, which prevent authors, publishers, journalists, scientists, bloggers and NGOs from speaking out. A third of publishers in this country will not publish books on subjects that are too hot to handle. More than half refuse to publish books on particularly litigious companies or individuals. The Libel Reform Campaign sets out to rebalance the law, so that reputations can be protected without unduly curtailing the freedom to write, and the freedom to read, on matters of public interest and honest opinion. With more than 55,000 signatures on our online petition, record numbers of MPs signed our Early Day Motion in spring 2010. All three main political parties made a commitment to libel reform in their election manifestos. Lord Lester, Vice President of English PEN, introduced a warmly-received Private Members Bill in the House of Lords in July 2010 and the Government published their own draft Defamation Bill in March 2011. Whilst English PEN continues to push for improvements to the Bill, we have also launched the Alternative Libel Project, to assess forms of Alternative Dispute Resolution that could help people to resolve libel claims without the threatening cost and complexity of a High Court trial. With an expert advisory committee chaired by the distinguished former Appeal Court Judge Sir Stephen Sedley, we are at the cutting edge of research into this crucial area of law.


Alongside the Libel Reform Campaign we have led the Visiting Artists Campaign with the Manifesto Club, aiming to persuade the UK Border Agency to remove short-term cultural visitors from the points-based visa system. Our briefing on the issue was cited approvingly in a House of Lords debate, and the Greater London Assembly has now joined our calls for reforms that would stop the scandal of visiting artists and writers being turned away from the UK at ports, airports and stations. These campaigns have the potential to affect millions of members of the public, in this country and around the world

Lord Anthony Lester, Honorary Vice-President of English PEN, launches his Private Members Defamation Bill at the Free Word Centre. Photo: Robert Sharp


Independent Working in partnership towards a distinctive vision

English PEN now works in partnership with an astonishing range of organisations across the culture and human rights sectors. Examples of our partners include London Book Fair; the London Review Bookshop; the Manifesto Club; Dash Arts; Refugee Week; Kings College London; Amnesty International UK; the Hay Festival; Shakespeare and Co bookshop; the Institut Francais; Granta; Virago; the Burmese Arts Festival; LSE; Doughty Street Chambers; the Poetry Society; Hibiscus; and the Tricycle Theatre. The Libel Reform Campaign has drawn on the support of an even wider range of organisations, from the Publishers Association and the Society of Authors to the Royal College of GPs, Which, and Mumsnet. We also work closely with Free Word, and the organisations in the Free Word Centre, notably Index on Censorship, ARTICLE 19 and The Reading Agency. These close working relationships allow us to achieve far more than any of us could alone. English PEN was among the most active events programmers at the Free Word Centre this year.


Marjorie-Ann Watts (r), the granddaughter of PENs founder, in discussion with (l-r) Simon Barker, Victoria Glendinning and Jonathan Heawood. Photo: Robert Sharp


And, through our portfolio of prizes, we recognise those writers who have distinguished themselves, through the revelatory honesty of a great memoir (the PEN/Ackerley Prize, won by Gabriel Weston for Direct Red); the intellectual triumph of a great work of history (the Hessell-Tiltman Prize, awarded to Diarmaid MacCulloch for A History of Christianity); a lifetimes service to literature (the Golden PEN Prize, won by Sir Salman Rushdie); or their engagement with wider social and political issues (the PEN/Pinter Prize, shared this year between Hanif Kureishi and the Mexican journalist Lydia Cacho). Also this year, PENs nomination was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize: Liu Xiaobo, former President of the Independent Chinese PEN Centre, now serving a prison sentence in China. All these writers have inspired us with the independence of their vision

It matters a lot to me to get this, you know. Its a very old award and its been won by all kinds of great writers and any list that has Doris Lessing and Muriel Spark in it is just fine by me. Its a great honour particularly because it comes from PEN and Ive had a long and close relationship with various bits of PEN, both here in England and in America. I well remember that when I was in need of what PEN can do, PENs support was colossally important and wonderfully unified and it really mattered to me a great deal. And one of the reasons why after things got better I wanted to be involved with the work of PEN was a way to try to give something back, in return for what was done for me. And I know that its the anniversary


Sir Salman Rushdie, winner of the Golden PEN Prize 2010; Photo: Beowulf Sheehan

of something else too. I hear the Writers in Prison Committee is 50 years old this year. That work has been astonishingly successful. I think one of the things we learn is that tyrants and censors actually dislike the glare of publicity and have this bizarre desire to be popular so that if you point out to them that theyre doing things that make them extremely unpopular its sometimes easier for them to release the writers in question than to court that hostility, so I would salute the Writers in Prison Committee and long may it prosper. Thank you. Sir Salman Rushdie on winning the Golden PEN Prize 2010


Fundraising activities

Ian Hislop searches for an answer at the Colman Getty PEN Quiz 2010. Photo: Robert Sharp


With total income of 565,478, English PEN once again saw a period of significant growth 43% in fact. As ever, this very positive result is thanks to the hard work of a number of people, both inside and outside the office, working closely together. English PENs fundraising continues to rest on the core support of our members. Whilst subscriptions income has grown only slightly this year, we remain optimistic that, with further investment in membership recruitment, we will see a higher rate of growth in future years. We are impressed with the consistent income from our major fundraising event, the Colman Getty PEN Quiz, which remains solid in a challenging economic climate for our major supporters in the media industry. Likewise, we are proud that our Silver PEN partners, HarperCollins, Penguin, Hachette, Random House and London Book Fair, have continued to offer their support. And we enjoy our ongoing relationship with Bloomberg, who have sponsored the Writers in Translation programme since its inception in 2005. Our income from trusts and foundations has grown steadily. Our largest supporters in this sector were the Open Society Foundation and the Sigrid Rausing Trust, who funded our campaigns, alongside the Hargrave Foundation. Other funders included LankellyChase, the Scotshill Trust, the A B Charitable Trust, the Allan and Nesta Ferguson Trust, the Pack Foundation, John Lyons Charity and the Jill Franklin Trust (for the Readers & Writers programme); the Rothschild Foundation, the Tolkien Trust, the John S. Cohen Foundation, the Robert Gavron Charitable Trust, and the Miss GM Marriage Charitable Trust (for the Writers in Prison Committee); and the Garrick Charitable Trust (for Writers in Public). We also received support from a number of extremely generous individuals, including Ruth Maxted, Lady Antonia Fraser, Julian Barnes, Michael Frayn, Sir Michael Holroyd, Judy Piatkus, Elisa Segrave and Felix Dennis. Alongside our regular statutory funding from Arts Council England we also received a grant this year from the Big Lottery Fund towards the Readers & Writers programme. And we were pleased to see everyone who bought a ticket to our many events, notably Inspirations, at the Tricycle Theatre, which marked the handover of the English PEN Presidency from Lisa Appignanesi to Gillian Slovo


Future developments
The celebration of PENs 90th anniversary in 2011 is being marked by a number of activities. These include the production of a Roadshow Writing Freedom which is touring literary festivals around the country, including Hay, Guildford, Ilkley, Manchester and others, introducing PENs work to ever larger audiences. We have also commissioned the world-renowned artist Antony Gormley to create a sculpture Witness in honour of PENs work on behalf of absent writers. And we are relaunching the English PEN website and our online PEN Atlas, with support from Arts Council England. This will become a go-to site for audiences who care about international literature, the freedom to write and the freedom to read. Through increased use of our Twitter feed (now with 4,000 followers), we hope to more than double our websites unique users, to at least 200,000, in 2011-12. We are launching major new initiatives this year, including the Alternative Libel Project, generously funded by the Nuffield Foundation. Our draft proposals for mediation in libel have the potential to change the landscape, not only in this area of law, but in other areas that affect the freedom to write. Future authors and their readers may be grateful for our detailed work now, which will create a viable and sustainable alternative to the winner takes all approach that characterises the High Court, with its complex procedures and staggeringly high legal costs. We are also developing our existing programmes, building important new partnerships with universities and rolling out an ambitious membership drive. We aim to double English PENs membership by 2015. This unique revenue stream is extremely important to the organisation; and the energy and activism of our members is crucial to English PENs success.


We are developing a regular Free Speech Cafe events slot to bring our members together around complex themes in the territory of free speech. The first of these events tackled the challenging issue of privacy, and we are preparing to tackle another topical issue in November 2011. Meanwhile, we have commissioned a leading young barrister, Martha Spurrier, to prepare a Users Guide to the freedom to write, to be published online as part of our digital relaunch. The digital relaunch will also include a reinvented version of the PEN Atlas of world literature, absorbing this important project more closely into the core English PEN site. The PEN Atlas also feeds into the Global Translation Initiative, which culminated with the publication of our final report at International Translation Day on 30 September 2011. Our collaborative work on this with Free Word and other partners has helped to share knowledge and best practice throughout the translation sector, which is rapidly strengthening as a result. We are now preparing to take on our new ACE responsibilities in April 2012, with great excitement and enthusiasm. In order to strengthen the organisation for the future in particular for our future responsibilities for lottery funding through the translation fund we are finalising a governance review that has run over the last two years. In addition to our permanent staff, we have created a number of paid internships, to address the inequity of routes into the literary profession in todays challenging economic climate. The first of our paid interns has provided valuable support to the other staff, whilst learning his way around the sector. He is just part of English PENs exciting future. We hope that this report gives a good overview of our organisations story so far. And we look forward to working with you as this story continues to unfold in front of us


Summary financial statement

The summary financial statement contains English PENs detailed Income Statement and Summary Balance Sheet. These include the key headline data from the full financial statements which are available from Free Word Centre, 60 Farringdon Road, London, EC1R 3GA. The Summary financial statement does not contain sufficient information to allow a full understanding of the results and state of affairs of English PEN as are provided by the full annual financial statements. The independent auditors of English PEN, Grant Harrod Parkinson LLP have issued an unqualified audit opinion on the , full financial statements. The summary financial statement, was approved by the Board of Trustees on 20 September 2011 and signed on its behalf by: Name: G Slovo Position Trustee Name: B Kernon Position Trustee


Balance Sheet

as at 31 March 2011

Fixed Assets
Tangible Assets Investments
2,027 182,254 184,281

2,747 175,883 178,630

Current Assets
Debtors Cash at Bank and in hand Creditors Amounts falling due within one year Net Current Liabilities
(164,875) 47,050 231,331 (165,577) 11,425 190,055 19,894 192,031 211,925 13,649 163,353 177,001

Total Assets Less Current Liabilities Funds

Profit-and-loss Account Shareholders' Funds - All Equity

231,331 231,331

190,055 190,055

The financial statements have been prepared in accordance with the special provisions of Part 15 of the Companies Act 2006 relating to small charitable companies and with the Financial Reporting Standard for Smaller Entities (effective April 2008).


Income Account
Programme Income
Campaigns Readers & Writers World Atlas Writers in Prison Writers in Public Writers in Translation

as at 31 March 2011

YEAR ENDED 31 Mar 2011

116,864 89,186 3,884 57,438 11,873 42,961

YEAR ENDED 31 Mar 2010

64,109 45,867 0 35,259 8,171 28,557

Core Income
Subscriptions Subscriptions - Silver PEN Subscriptions - Corporate Arts Council Fundraising Quiz Income Other Income Investment Income Contribution to Core Costs from Programmes
43,543 4,000 16,885 75,708 19,123 37,229 2,100 9,510 27,174 565,478 530,572 41,241 5,000 15,000 73,058 7,821 43,062 5,603 7,298 14,258 394,303 (400,161)

less Expenditure - schedule attached Other Incoming Resources: Transfer of Reserves from PEN Literary Foundation Gains/losses on Investments Net Surplus/(Deficit) for Period:

0 6,371 41,276

58,010 17,425 69,577


Expenses Account
Programme Expenditure
Campaigns Readers & Writers World Atlas Writers in Prison Writers in Public Writers in Translation

as at 31 March 2011

YEAR ENDED 31 Mar 2011

108,395 80,766 3,884 50,820 34,963 51,149

YEAR ENDED 31 Mar 2010

47,361 62,048 0 44,499 18,199 21,208

Core Expenditure
Audit (Provision) Accountancy & Bookkeeping Bank and Credit Card Handling Charges Communications Computer Expenses incl IT support Congress & Travel Depreciation Dues - International PEN Equipment Rental Free Word Fundraising & Development Governance Insurance Internet Costs Legal & Professional Prizes Quiz Expenses Repairs & Renewals Rent, Rates and Service Charges Staff Support & Recruitment Sundry Expenses Telephone Wages & Salaries
4,200 10,283 1,172 4,733 5,555 4,159 720 11,468 1,971 32,191 4,803 6,676 633 2,094 0 10,471 22,886 0 0 2,665 1,223 535 72,157 4,198 9,713 834 16,752 3,747 3,316 1,231 13,374 1,847 0 2,856 5,557 564 3,301 1,725 9,563 21,870 6,051 26,702 393 2,251 1,091 69,910





Independent auditors statement to the Trustees of English PEN

We have examined the summary financial statement which comprises the Detailed Income Statement and the Summary Balance Sheet. English PENs Trustees have engaged us to examine the summary financial statement which has been prepared as if English PEN were entitled to prepare such a statement under Section 426 of the Companies Act 2006. This statement is made solely to the Trustees of English PEN as a body on terms we have agreed. Our work has been undertaken so that we might state to English PENs Trustees those matters we are required to state to them in such a statement and for no other purpose. To the fullest extent permitted by law, we do not accept or assume responsibility to anyone other than English PEN and English PENs Trustees as a body, for our work, for this statement or for the opinions we have formed.

Respective responsibilities of directors, Trustees and auditors

The Trustees and Executive Board are responsible for preparing English PENs review and assessment as if Section 428 of the Companies Act applied to English PEN. Our responsibility, in accordance with the terms of our engagement is to report to you our opinion on the consistency of the summary financial statement within English PENs review and assessment with the full annual financial statements, and its compliance with the relevant requirements of section 428 of the Companies Act 2006 and the regulations made thereunder as if they applied to English PEN. We also read the other information contained in English PENs review and assessment and consider the implications for our report if we become aware of any apparent misstatements of material inconsistencies with the summary financial statement.

Basis of opinion
We conducted our work in accordance with Bulletin 2008/3: The auditors statement on the summary financial statement issued by those financial statements.

In our opinion the summary financial statement is consistent with the full annual financial statements of English PEN for the year ended 31 March 2011 and complies with the applicable requirements of section 428 of the Companies Act 2006 and the regulations made thereunder as if they applied to English PEN. Jeremy Harrod FCCA For and on behalf of Grant Harrod Parkinson LLP , Statutory Auditor Chartered Accountants 49a High Street Ruislip, Middlesex, HA4 7BD 20 September 2011



English PEN People


PRESIDENT Gillian Slovo DEPUTY PRESIDENTS Derek Johns Lindsay Mackie Carole Seymour-Jones HONORARY TREASURER Barry Kernon TRUSTEES Raficq Abdulla MBE Monica Ali Julian Evans Rick Gekoski Lennie Goodings Daniel Hahn Eva Hoffman Amanda Hopkinson Charlie King Bashir Qureshi Geoffrey Robertson Fathieh Saudi Ros Schwartz Kamila Shamsie Salil Tripathi ACCOUNTANT 2010-11 Bernard Redhouse Redhouse & Associates Business Services Ltd 164a Kenton Road Harrow, Middlesex HA3 8BL


The PEN/Pinter Prize has become an important event in the literary calendar. Photo: James Darling


Registered Company number 05747142 (England and Wales) Registered Charity number 1125610 Registered office Free Word Centre 60 Farringdon Road London EC1R 3GA

Cover Image: Outgoing President Lisa Appignanesi hands over to new President Gillian Slovo, at the Tricycle Theatre, March 2011. Photo: George Torode