Margate Bookie

From Arcades to Arcadia

Thread and Word, a local group of artists and community members started in 2014 by Billie Penfold, present ‘From Arcades to Arcadia’, an interactive performative walk inspired by Tom Stoppard’s play ‘Arcadia’. The route of the walk includes a wander through the set of ‘Arcadia’, installed in the ballroom of Nayland Rock Hotel, and connecting both the play and the Sunken Garden. Continuing onto the Sunken Garden and back to Margate Station via a different route, the walk is prompted by readings from ‘Arcadia’ and a set of walking cards. The cards contain photographs of local places, viewfinders and walking prompts that might make you look at your surroundings in a new way. The walking performance has been developed through workshops with East Kent Mencap members delivered by Thread and Word artists.


I am a textile artist who brings her experience of teaching and research into performative works . In 2012 I formed a group called Thread and Word. Through call outs I work collaboratively to develop work with a focus on materials and process, using walking as a method to explore creativity.


Elspeth (Billie) Penfold (MRBS FRSA) is a textile artist who combines walking, weaving and performative storytelling. Billie uses hapticity and psychogeography to explore narratives. She hand spins ropes which are knotted by participants as part of performative events. 

In 2014, Billie formed a group called Thread and Word that delivers funded arts based projects through performed poetry. Through this group Billie uses digital media, sound and locative mapping to create hybrid, in person and digital walking events. Billie’s approach to multi-layered storytelling is influenced by her Andean background. Her practice allows for many voices, moving away from a linear view of the world and avoiding a linear interpretation. In 2020 Billie’s Thread and Word project ‘A Different Lens’ was awarded an honourable mention at the international festival Soundwalks September. Billie has just completed her MA in Creative Events Management at Falmouth University.