A Town with a Vibrant Writing Community
Corsham is an historic Wiltshire market town with a population of 14,000, eight miles from Bath. It has a vibrant Arts scene and is home to a wide variety of creative industries and organisations, including the Pound Arts Centre, Corsham Institute, Red Forge Studios and the newly-opened, innovative Digital Mansion. The town is the location for Bath Spa University’s Corsham Court campus and its creative writing Masters courses, with successful published writers on its staff and alumni. There’s also the thriving, independent Corsham Bookshop and the town’s modern Library at Springfield Campus, both of which host events and support the town’s 20+ reading clubs. Corsham’s schools (five primary, one preparatory, and one secondary), play an active part in writing events, too.
Corsham is a creative town and is not afraid to punch above its weight as an Arts destination and certainly has big plans for the future. The Town Council supports events, groups and organisations that help to establish Corsham as a place in which to create for those who live, work, and visit here.
Just one example of this is StoryTown. Co-produced by the Town Council and Paper Nations, StoryTown is less a literary festival and more a community celebration of telling tales in all their various forms. It is a prime example of how a town can pull together to support writing. You can read more about StoryTown below.
Hear from the Writers of Corsham
So you can get more of a sense of the Corsham writing community, we’ve spoken to local writers and workshop leaders Tanvir Bush and Chris Vick. Watch the videos below to hear about why writing is important to them, their interests, and what they hope to achieve through their workshops in the Corsham community.
We want to hear from even more writers and writing educators in Corsham to get a fuller picture of the imaginative and innovative practices that are occurring in this town. If you are a Corsham-based writer and would like to explore the creation of your own video, please get in touch on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dare to Write? Research
The first phase of Dare to Write? Research in Corsham took place between 2016-18 through the vehicle of Paper Nations. The 2016-18 Creative Writing in Schools programme involved a series of collaborations with local organisations (such as MakeBelieve Arts), local writers (such as Chris Vick) and a cluster of locals schools to identify what makes the town work as a ‘Writing Destination’. One of the focal points of our research was the StoryTown festival in 2018, led by Corsham Town Council in collaboration with local businesses, schools, venues, arts centres, libraries, writing organisations, and individuals.
In 2019-21, Paper Nations is set to deepen their relationship with Corsham Town Council through their Writing for All programme. They will continue to work closely with the Council on the production of the year-round celebration of writing that is StoryTown, as well as the festival itself. As part of this work Professor Bambo Soyinka and team will conduct further research into the functioning of a town as a Destination for writers and writing communities. The findings of this research will be documented on the Dare to Write? Atlas.