Frances Bingham

Frances Bingham

Valentine Ackland: A Transgressive Life by Frances Bingham
Sea light by Liz Mathews

Cover image - Sea light by Liz Mathews

Spacewater by Liz Mathews

Cover image - Spacewater
by Liz Mathews

London Panoticon by Frances Bingham

Cover image: London from Primrose Hill
by Liz Mathews

Twilight in the Rue Jacob by Liz Mathews

Cover image - Twilight in the Rue Jacob
by Liz Mathews

MOTHERTONGUE - cover image

MOTHERTONGUE - cover image
by Liz Mathews

Frances Bingham

is a freelance writer, based in London, published in fiction, non-fiction, plays and poetry.

She’s represented by literary agents Jonathan Clowes Ltd.

Her most recent publication is a biography: Valentine Ackland: A Transgressive Life (Handheld Press, 2021), described by reviewer Gill Davies on Shiny New Books as ‘A remarkable book about a remarkable woman’. AN Wilson writing in The Oldie said ‘Frances Bingham is a doughty champion and a good biographer.'

Her novel The Principle of Camouflage (Two Ravens Press, 2011) was described by Maureen Duffy as ‘a true work of the imagination, transporting Prospero’s island, and us, to wartime Britain on a shining wave of sea images.’ Elizabeth Baines, writing in the Guardian, called it ‘enticingly strange… poetic…beautifully written. I loved it.’ It was shortlisted as a ‘missing contender’ for the Guardian First Book Award, and selected for the Edinburgh International Book Festival.

As a non-fiction writer, she’s published Journey from Winter (Carcanet, 2008) - the selected poems of Valentine Ackland, with introductory critical biography. The Guardian commissioned her to write Ackland’s centenary feature, and she contributed a chapter to Critical Essays on Sylvia Townsend Warner (Edwin Mellen Press, 2006). She’s given readings and talks on Ackland at the National Poetry Library in London’s Southbank Centre, the V&A Friday Lates, on Woman’s Hour (BBC Radio 4) and for The British Library.

Her play The Blue Hour of Natalie Barney was first produced at the Arcola Theatre in London in November 2017, starring Amanda Boxer and directed by Kenneth Hoyt.
Comrade Ackland and I was broadcast as BBC Radio 4 Afternoon Drama on 27 May 2019, and selected as the Sunday Times Radio Pick of the Week.

She’s also published short stories and poems in anthologies and magazines, and read her work at numerous literary festivals, as well as contributing to events such as the Southbank Centre’s Literature and Spoken Word programme, and the BBC Radio 4 series From the Ban to the Booker.

Frances is the daughter of the Scots historian and biographer Caroline Bingham. She works with her partner Liz Mathews, the studio potter and lettering artist, on text-based projects such as their artists’ book MOTHERTONGUE (Pottery Press 1999), the artists’ film Riversoup, and most recently London Panopticon (2020), which Mimi Khalvati described as ‘... more than a pamphlet. As sparkling and all-encompassing as the city itself, it is a vision, a love song, a pilgrimage, a perfect union of image and word. And it takes one’s breath away!’ For more on Pottery Press publications, see The Pottery Press.

Also see her profile on writer’s blogue Words in Company and she can be contacted via Jonathan Clowes Ltd.

© text Frances Bingham, images Liz Mathews
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