National Writing Day in the High Peak
Friday 14th July 2017 11:16 High Peak News Posted by Adam Higgins

A High Peak group played an active part in the UK’s first ever National Writing Day.

Held recently, National Writing Day celebrated writing creatively with the aim of getting everyone, everywhere, to get writing and to share their stories.

People from across the UK put pen to paper, unleashed their imagination and made their voices heard.

Poems, stories, letters, raps, songs, scripts and more were all created on the day – with schools, libraries, writing groups and communities across the country sharing in this nationwide celebration.

Thanks to a bursary from Writing East Midlands, High Peak Community Arts was able to provide a series of creative writing opportunities for people of all ages and abilities across a number of locations across the borough.

The workshops were led by one of High Peak Community Arts’ Ambassadors – the renowned folk singer Bella Hardy.

Bella, herself from the High Peak, spent the day engaging people with her self-written songs and encouraging them to write words of their own.

In total, four creative writing workshops were delivered – reaching over 80 people, aged eight to 97.

Groups involved women at Charis House in Buxton, Year Six children at Buxton Junior School, residents at Haddon Hall Care Home and young people aged between eight and 17 years old from High Peak Community Arts’ Tall Tales project and Film Cuts Club from Gamesley and Glossop.

In each workshop, Bella played a few songs, accompanying herself on the fiddle, and led sessions on how to write a song, story or poem from scratch.

Emma Baxter, Education Manager from Writing East Midlands, who was driving across the region visiting the different National Writing Day projects, paid a visit to Haddon Hall to meet residents and see for herself what was happening.

Alison Bowry, Creative Programme Manager at High Peak Community Arts, said: “We had lots of fun with so many different people of all ages during the day. Each group came up with wonderful and imaginative ideas, and in our longest workshop – the morning at Charis House – women in the group created lyrics for entire songs.

“As always, the children at the school and in our youth groups were brimful of creativity, and the elders thought of diverse story ideas from mystery and spies, to a man who was so engrossed in his books that he forgot to eat, drink and sleep!”

The project has been so successful this year that Writing East Midlands have said that they would like to fund a High Peak writers’ residency next year.

For more information, or to find out more about any of High Peak Community Arts’ programmes, call 01663 744516, visit or email [email protected].


Main picture:

Support: Bella Hardy looks over some of the ideas of an elderly woman at Haddon Hall on National Writing Day