Irish PEN is about to relaunch as Irish PEN/PEN na hÉireann, following the amalgamation of the original organisation and the Freedom to Write Campaign. A steering group has been established to set up an organisation featuring some new structures while adhering to the principles of PEN International and the PEN Charter.

The new Irish PEN/PEN na hÉireann will be launched at an online Zoom event to mark the Day of the Imprisoned Writer: Sunday, 15th November at 7:00 pm. Register here.

In the meantime, please see below (a) our mission statement and (b) a summary of the steering group’s current activity:

(a) The aims of Irish PEN/PEN na hÉireann are: to promote literature in and about Ireland both nationally and internationally; to defend worldwide the right of writers to responsible freedom of expression as defined in the PEN Charter; and to foster international understanding through the appreciation of literature.

(b) The steering group has set up a Company Limited by Guarantee, a prerequisite for applying for Charitable Status. It has continued to be active in support of writers that are at risk or in prison because of their writing, and it has fostered links with other writers’ associations in Ireland such as the Irish Writers’ Union, Aontas na Scríbhneoirí Gaeilge and the Letters With Wings project. It is also in close and continuing contact with colleagues in PEN Centres in England, Scotland and Wales.  A Newsletter with more details will go out to current Irish Pen Members in November.

STEERING GROUP MEMBERS: June Considine, Catherine Dunne (Secretary), Kate Ennals, Pádraig Hanratty (Newsletter Editor & Membership Secretary), Sophia Hillan (Vice-Chair), Iggy McGovern (Treasurer) Liz McManus, Maria McManus, Lia Mills (Chair), Éilís Ní Dhuibhne, John O’Donnell.

This website is currently being updated. Please bear with us while we make this transition.