National Storytelling Week was an inspiration of summer in 1999. The first one created in January/February 2000 with a view to becoming an annual event in the calendar of The Society for Storytelling and the listening public at large. It is always held during the week traditionally containing the 2nd of February
as that is Candlemass a traditional festival of the old church calendar. One that is special because it contains at its centre a cross candle blessing on the throat.
The Society for Storytelling itself is a multi faith organisation and has members from many traditions and communities.
As National Storytelling Week has grown over the past sixteen years, the groups and organisations taking part have multiplied by leaps and bounds. Storytelling individuals, clubs, schools, kindergartens, theatres, businesses are its bedrock but over the years it has also accumulated BUPA Care Homes, Nursing Homes, Hospitals, Prisons, Senior Citizens Associations.
Like many festivals these days so many organisations have wanted to take part that it was agreed on creation that it would have its own fringe days to accommodate those events which found they could not fit within the festival week. So The Society for Storytelling named the four days prior to its start and the four days following the event as The National Storytelling Week Coat-Tales.
Every year The Society for Storytelling also gets international requests from other countries across the globe to take part and the Society communicates that no event is turned away - as a story is a letter from yesterday, we turn it around and make it ours today, in the process handing it on to tomorrow.