An award winning blog   a ‘blog that brightens our day’ 

DSCF0933I am Londoner, a poet, puppeteer, artist and therapist who moved to the South Coast seven years ago with my partner soon after my mother died in very sad circumstances.  It’s been a bit of a roller coaster, but there’s plenty to do, walks on the beach and the Downs, theatres, cinemas, writing groups, courses in just about everything.

I  studied singing and art at Evolution, drawing at the Friends Centre and creative writing at Sussex Uni etc.  I did a short course in stand up comedy with Jill Edwards, writing my own material and appearing in New Acts at the Komedia, followed by various gigs for two years.

Writing  – I have always been a compulsive writer. I wrote plays for Pelham Puppets and our own marionettes when I was 14. Also sketches, articles and a play about travellers performed at the Young Vic when I was in my forties. I’ve written education courses, copy for an Adult Education Institute and two dissertations for my degrees.  I became a  freelance journalist  and a member of the The Society of Woman Writers and Journalists. (SWWJ).

I changed course later in life and did some courses at the Poetry School and at Arvon. I have had a poem – ‘Rite of Passage’ – published in Compact and others in   Writer’s News,  Poets Corner and Rottingdean Writer’s Anthologies.

I have always enjoyed poetry but writing it is a different matter, however a course at Sussex University seven years ago with John McCullough was particularly inspiring!

John McCollough is a well known poet who lives in Hove and is the author of several poetry collections including an award winning one called ‘Frost Fairs’.

John’s course provided sufficient encouragement for me to publish my first book of poetry about  life, death and ageing as well as poems about my life in puppetry.

1-DSC08714-003 ‘Don’t Throw Away the Daisies’   available  in the Open Arts Cafe in Rottingdean

To buy on Amazon by click on the links at end of page

2012  Joint winner of competition judged by New Writing South competition at the Hatchery Poems in a local anthology.

2013   One of my poems was  short-listed in The Bridport Poetry comp.   I was also on the long list for a poetry pamphlet with Cinnamon Press but gave up trying to get this one published.

2015  Was lucky enough to get a mini residency in Postman’s Park courtesy of the Poetry School (see post) and London Open Squares. I have been invited twice to read poems at Troubadour’s theme nights, courtesy of Anne-Marie Fyfe. I’ve just completed my new pamphlet ‘The Puppeteer’s Daughter’ – any publishers out there interested?

Blogging is brilliant  – It’s been loads of fun and I’ve made contact with people all over the world. It has provided a focus, something to write on a regular basis.

I decided to include news, reviews, events, things that I find interesting, photography, home spun philosophy, visits to interesting places around Brighton and also London. Gradually a readership came out of nowhere. I think I am up to 50,000 hits.

My partner and I put our names down for an allotment and three years later we got one. We have also re-designed the garden. My partner went back to playing music. He was already proficient on the flute and the violin but has extended his range of instruments.

Marionettes I  launched into conserving our collection of 200 marionettes made by my parents including those performed on the West Pier in the feature film ‘Oh What a Lovely War’ in the 60s.    I made films and also tried to de-clutter my life.

Latest posts  click on this link for the latest post.


My podcast I add a different poem from my book at intervals


To buy the first collection

Black and white edition

Colour edition  

John McCullough says – ‘Ann’s poetry covers the big topics of love and death with originality and satisfies the reader’s  heart as well as their head.  Take for instance  the title poem which is full of surprises yet also wonderfully poignant.  The energy of her work leaves you feeling revitalized and seeing the world afresh’.

Kiersty Boon  says – ‘This collection of poems, fully illustrated by the author, is a wonderful journey from a magical childhood of puppets and seaside towns.  The delicacy of the difficult stages of life and memories experienced are offset with humorous anecdotes and magical tales for young and old alike’ – Kiersty Boon, poet and author.

The illustrations – some were oil paintings,  prints or pastels I had done over the years  that seemed appropriate to a particular poem –  others were sketches in pen designed especially for the book.

Illustrations from colour version


    The West Pier – pen and ink   – Robin  – oil on heavy paper.

Colour print done at a course at City Lit.  ‘Weaving Spells’ in the colour edition

Short films  –   Many films have been made since moving to the South East seven years ago. Burning the clocks, Virginia Woolf’s garden etc. Some have 9.000 hits others 20 so take you pic. Or click on the link below.


Or to see my films associated with our marionettes please click on.


Alice in Wonderland – The following film was the first and hardest one to make it is my favourite made a couple of years before and mother died  She had climbed up into my loft in South London to operate some of the characters in her late 70s.

The boat scene in the garden took forever. It was  a labour of love and took me forever to edit! It is a tiny extract from the story that we had performed all over the country. The White Rabbit had  performed  for Her Majesty the Queen at Buckingham Place, so he is a right royal rabbit!

One of the most popular films is Virginia Wolf’s garden.

There is also a  film of a picture book I made. It jumped through several hoops with Oxford University Press, but in the end they did not publish it.

Click on http://www.puppethouse.co.uk/ for the dedicated website developed with my youngest son Paul Perrin, 15 years ago.  My stage name was Ann Field and I was a puppeteer in my own right.

Click on   https://annperrin.wordpress.com/puppethouse/

2014  I started a new online puppet museum site which compliments our puppethouse.uk. It may not be continued.  http://puppethousemuseum.wordpress.com/

Our links with Brighton

In the sixties our family made and performed with marionettes in the feature film ‘Oh What a Lovely War’,  on the worn wooden boards of the West Pier in Brighton.

Our marionettes were directed by the great Lord Attenborough, no less.

Brighton 2013  The making of ‘Oh What a Lovely War’ was made by the BBC South East for their coverage of the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the Great War. They filmed the recent conservation of the marionettes and my family’s role in performing with them in the film in the 60’s. We all went to the Duke of York’s Cinema for a special showing the original film.

The Weald ‘for love or our allotment’  please click on the link

I waited for three years to get an allotment I just love it. A starter plot on the Weald, but I call it a finishing plot. I don’t aspire to anything larger.


SAD/Winter Blues – ideas for coping – I am not good in the winter. Many creative people have periods of self doubt and/or depression. I think it goes with the territory but I am particularly vulnerble in the winter.

This subject also has a blog and one of its own.


‘Relaxation and Self-hypnosis for Positive Health’  It can also be useful for controlling pain so I am told.  There are two options -you can close your eyes and just listen, or watch the images – which were added later.

I am a trained therapist and life coach so it really is fine to try it out.

Qualifications  –  I was born with speech problems and am discalcous. I am also the daughter of puppeteers so formal schooling was often disrupted so all my qualifications were gained in later life!

Teaching Certificate, BA with the OU, MSc in Life Course Development from Birkbeck -London University – Counselling qualifications and Master Practitioner in NLP – Neuro Linguistic Programming.

End of story


IT and technical support Paul Perrin – paul@idltd.com

Poetry  Courses with tutors  John McCullough, Ian Duhig, Jacob Polley, Jean Sprackland, Tim Dooley, Ann-Marie Fyfe, Jackie Wills and others.

Encouragement with poetry and support – Kiersty Boon who also downloaded my first book for Lulu, Jane Maker, Janet Cameron, John Davies and Simon Wrigley.

Film making Orpington Film and Video Makers,  Spring Park Film Makers, Tom Hardwick for lessons and support with film making.

General family support.  Alan my long suffering partner who prove reads my posts – Robin my eldest son who has a sports massage practice in Biggin Hill and is a racquetball coach and regularly gives sensible advice.. Paul my youngest son has an IT company in Brighton and gives me all technical support I need for all my websites.

Three grandchildren, two who are at Uni the third is planning to go next year.

However I seldom mention any of my family on blogs as I like to respect their privacy.


20 Responses to About

  1. mary Marro says:

    Ann, is it possible to get a copy of the illustrated version of an Old Dry Stone Wall?
    Is it a book yet or just a Utube video?

  2. pam says:

    Ann, lovely to find your blog, it is beautifully done, and you do not look –! It must be all your talents, and your child like persona which I loved at Lumb Bank. As you know I raced away on the Friday, thus escaping my cooking session (!) and got to Switzerland, god knows how, he directed me with his clever finger, at ten that evening..my beloved poet died the next morning at 7, ————I haven’t quite got over it, September 11th too. So haven’t written a poem since, not yet, I did take my partner’s ancestral clothes etc back to Jerusalem (he was Bishop there for 33 years in 1856) and spent four weeks as a Palestine activist documenting the terrible things the israelis do to these occupied people, so I guess I moved in another direction. Keep up the good work – much love (PS: just sold three of my poetry books on Amazon! That was something…)

    • ann perrin says:

      Wow! What a story, hope you get back to your poetry eventually and make steady progress in recovering. Congrats on books. Love Ann

  3. Wendy Ogden says:

    Lovely to meet you on Sunday at Kay’s workshop. So glad I noted down your blog. So much here to enjoy! I love the artwork and the poetry seems so warm and sincere to me.

    I’ll be back for more reading but hope to see you at the next workshop in January. Let’s hope the weather is as kind.

  4. Linda Lee says:

    Dear Ann,
    Sitting between doing things feeling a bit SAD, some memories popped into my head. The Rotherhithe Workshop came up and how I pondered about the time I sent there, while not really understanding why I was there! Of course it was you who set this up after we met teaching (Lanfranc?). I did a search and was so pleased to find your website with all the wonderful creative stuff bursting out of it.

  5. annperrin says:

    Great to get nice comments and yes loved Rotherhithe Workshops, my dad worked there too for a few years. After his death found a cutting from the Standard saying he had helped set up the Brunel museum over there. In our family we never knew what the other members of the family were up to half the time!
    No idea where we met, but Lanfranc – How I loved the Head, great at supporting teachers as well as pupils.
    Got a brill film on youtube about Sands Studio, well I like it.
    Was not sure about the SAD page, only been up a month…but will keep it up.
    Take care Ann

    • Linda Lee says:

      Just to jog your memory – we had many conversations in the staffroom, then you took me with you one afternoon to the gypsy unit where IKEA now is. A few months later you found me a job with Ron at Rotherhithe! My sister remembers meeting you at a party in Elmer’s Rd where she was transfixed by your involvement with Pelham Puppets (a great favourite of hers). The Puppethouse site and history is wonderful – I had no idea at the time that Ron was master puppet-maker and along with your mother had been such leading figures in their field (no pun intended).

  6. Sue Bartlett says:

    Hi Ann

    I loved ‘Weaving Spells’; I was there in the moment with you.
    No wonder you are so creative it’s in the genes.

    Sue Bartlett

  7. Margaret Frentz says:

    Hello Ann,

    Only today, have I discovered you, your family, and your puppets!

    I have three Marlborough Wilts wooden puppets which have been stored in one of our closets for many, many years. We have the blue & white caterpillar, the Washer Woman, and a horse and all are in very good condition. I am looking for a new home for them. I would like to see them go to a home where they will be used and not just to someone who will sell them.

    Do you know of such a place?

    Thank you,

    • annperrin says:

      Thank you Margaret for this comment I know it led us both a merry dance, with you even considering taking out a second mortgage to send them all the way from the states to me!
      Well following our emails I now I gather they have a good home in Birmingham Alhamba! It is amazing how blogging can set thins in motion in different parts of the world. Thank you so much for this comment it was lovely. A play book is on its way. Take care Ann

  8. TheBigForest says:

    You have been nominated for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. Find out more here. http://thebigforestuk.wordpress.com/2013/01/12/the-very-inspiring-blogger-award-the-winners/. If blog awards aren’t your kind of thing then that is absolutely fine but we love your blog!

    • ann perrin says:


  9. Jeni Brixey says:

    Odds are long but are you the daughter of Percy and Peggy? Apologies if not, trying to trace family and ended up here :) Interesting stuff Ann!

  10. This is my first time visit at here and i am actually impressed to read everthing at single place.

  11. George Appleby says:

    Dear Ann, We met at the Poetry School last year and at its party in September you gave me a signed copy of your Daisy collection. Will you be going to this year’s launch/party ? Inspired by you I have produced a collection and I’d like to give you a copy. I’d also very much appreciate your advice on making it available to the public. Any chance I could ring you sometime ? (My collection lacks the variety and beautiful illustrations of yours, but its a start.)
    George Appleby

    • ann perrin says:

      Hi George, Sorry so long in replying, So glad you got your book out. I think even self publishing means that one strives to get organised, get poems checked out. workshopped etc. But we have to realise with so much wonderful stuff out there a choice between our modest efforts and other, more experienced poets means we are limited for sales.
      My suggestions are to take your book to open mics, don’t advertise it (so, so tacky) just read from it. Try a local cafe or gift shop see if they will take it. I managed to get two to take mine, but their cut means I don’t make any money! But who does?
      If you have some spare, leave them on seats in parks, busy shopping precincts with a note ‘a gift to you’. Then congratulate yourself for resourcefulness and get on with your next poem. Best Wishes Ann

  12. Hi Ann
    Love your Blog!
    However I just wanted to ask you about the following:
    My best friend Alan Gage for his endless support.
    Was Alan by any chance connected with Gage or Gaje Marionettes?
    They performed at schools in the Bristol area in the 1960s.
    I can be found on Facebook – Henleaze Book
    I do hope you can help?

    • ann perrin says:

      Lovely to hear from you. No Alan was never a puppeteer although he would dispute that having helped with the filming of my marionettes, been general dogsbody and even marionette manipulator in chief as I endless try to ensure they are conserved for posterity. A real struggle at times as I am the only puppeteer left in our family. Take care Ann

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