Recently renovated, The Hurst is a place you can write, far away from daily distractions. The house and gardens were the former home of playwright John Osborne. The grounds boast Redwoods, wild orchids, surrounded by the forest-covered Shropshire Hills, designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
The 19th century building has been given a thoroughly 21st century renovation. All 16 bedrooms have en-suite bathrooms, the main workshop room has a hand crafted table for twenty and a growing library, and a lift gives accessibility to every bedroom. The house sits within 26 acres of woodland, with a spring-fed lake and inspiring walks.
The Arvon Writers Retreat is held at the Clockhouse, in the grounds of The Hurst.
The centre is situated several miles from Craven Arms station, which has rail connections to London, Wales, the North and South-West England. There are local taxi services – we can arrange for a taxi to pick you up for incoming and return journeys.
The Hurst welcomes Disabled people – there is wheelchair access to every room via a lift, with all rooms equipped with ensuite bathrooms, five of which are wetrooms equipped for wheelchair access.
The Hurst is about 8 miles west of Craven Arms on the B4368 between Clun and Clunton. Head for Craven Arms on the A49, between Ludlow and Shrewsbury. At the Craven Arms Hotel, take the B4368, signposted Clun. One mile beyond Clunton, you will see a white house on your right. Just past this is a left-hand turn into our driveway. From Wales, or via Bishop’s Castle, head for Clun on the A488. In Clun, take the B4368 signposted Craven Arms. After 1 mile you will come to a left-hand bend with a black-and-white chevron warning sign – the right-hand turn just around the bend is The Hurst driveway.
There are rail connections to London, Wales, the North and South-West England from Craven Arms station, eight miles away.
The nearest station is Craven Arms, eight miles from The Hurst. It is a fairly well-serviced station on the main line between Manchester and Cardiff, with rail connections to London, the North and South-West England.
Three Years at Arvon – Natasha Carlish
Natasha Carlish, Centre Director at The Hurst. When I arrived at The Hurst three years ago, the world…
COURSES AT The Hurst ALL COURSES
1 . STARTING TO WRITE
Keep it real and carry on
Discovering what you want to write about and the best form for your voice is a ...
- Karen McCarthy Woolf
- Courttia Newland
- Guest: Roopa Farooki
5 . STARTING TO WRITE
A way into writing
If you’ve ever wanted to explore creative writing but you haven’t found a w ...
- Rachel Seiffert
- Sam Riviere
- Guest: Shazea Quraishi
8 . EDITING FICTION
Making your fiction all it can be
This is a week of editing fiction for novelists or short story writers who want ...
- Sunjeev Sahota
- Kate Harvey
- Guest: Lisa Blower
11 . FICTION
Creative inspiration from community
The practice of writing can often feel lonely and steeped in uncertainty, whic ...
- Mark Haddon
- Molly McGrann
- Guest: Nikita Lalwani
14 . FICTION: WORK-IN-PROGRESS
Fiction workspace: grow, plot and edit your novel
If you feel stuck, or you want help with plot, structure or different ways in ...
- Maggie Gee
- Chris Cleave
- Guest: Kit de Waal
16 . WRITING A NOVEL: TUTORED RETREAT
360-degree boost to your novel
Developing a novel poses challenges of craft, imagination and stamina. This re ...
- Monica Ali
- Jacob Ross
- Guest: Andrew Michael Hurley
17 . STARTING TO WRITE FICTION
Voice, characters and narrative
This week we will explore the essential aspects of starting to write fiction & ...
- Kerry Young
- Toby Litt
- Guest: Jon Teckman
19 . FICTION: LITERARY THRILLER
Stories from the edge
By breaking down the barriers between what is genre and what is literary we ca ...
- Jake Arnott
- Louise Welsh
- Guest: Tasha Kavanagh
23 . FICTION
The long and winding road to first draft
This week we focus on your work and how to bring it to completion. We will supp ...
- Neel Mukherjee
- Amanda Smyth
- Guest: Mez Packer
25 . QUEER FICTION
Return to the forest
Following the success of Arvon’s first ever queer writing course, we return w ...
- Patrick Gale
- Stella Duffy
- Guest: Will Eaves
29 . ROMANTIC FICTION
From kiss to completion: the road to romance
‘The course of true love never did run smooth’, and neither does the writin ...
- Alison Mercer
- Elizabeth Enfield
- Guest: Sarra Manning
32 . EDITING A NOVEL
Shaping, sharpening and digging deeper
An early draft of a novel is a very different beast from a finished manuscript ...
- Alison MacLeod
- Juliette Mitchell
- Guest: Anna Kelly
34 . POETRY
From ideas to fruition
This is a week in which we will explore the many ways poetry can bring ideas, ...
- Jo Shapcott
- Ian Duhig
- Guest: Paul Batchelor
36 . POETRY: TUTORED RETREAT WITH WALKING
The rhythms of walking
Walking was an inseparable part of creativity for the Romantic poets. They sha ...
- Sasha Dugdale
- Guest: Stephanie Norgate
37 . POETRY
Do you keep writing the same poem over and over again? What happens to our cre ...
- Jen Hadfield
- Katrina Naomi
- Guest: Penny Pepper
44 . Poetry
How do poems think?
William Carlos Williams said ‘No ideas but in things’. Considering this and ...
- Michael Symmons Roberts
- Frances Leviston
- Guest: Selina Nwulu
49 . Poetry: Towards a collection
The art of creating a collection
Making the leap to producing a collection is different from writing single poe ...
- Fiona Sampson
- Brenda Hillman
- Guest: Ahren Warner
50 . Poetry
Writing public poetry out of private chaos
Poets write out of their personal chaos – the preoccupations that arise from ...
- Clare Pollard
- Steve Ely
- Guest: Carole Bromley
56 . NON-FICTION: TUTORED RETREAT
Life and other journeys
At the heart of the finest travel books, memoirs and histories is a writer’s ...
- Rory MacLean
- Justin Marozzi
- Guest: Sara Wheeler
58 . Narrative Non-Fiction
Telling true stories
This week we will explore a wide variety of narrative based techniques for tel ...
- Melanie McGrath
- Jay Griffiths
- Guest: Clarles Foster
60 . Starting to Write Non-Fiction
Transforming facts into compelling stories
Do you have a non-fiction subject you are burning to write about? Are you unsu ...
- Paul Kingsnorth
- Melanie Challenger
- Guest: Jessica Woollard
62 . YOUNG ADULT FICTION
Exploring and finding your voice
Some of the bravest, boldest and most challenging ction today is being publishe ...
- Marcus Sedgwick
- Julia Green
- Guest: Annabel Pitcher
67 . PLAYWRITING
From idea to script
If you already have an idea for a play, but you need the tools to turn it into ...
- Evan Placey
- Elinor Cook
- Guest: Tessa Walker
72 . RADIO DRAMA
Developing your lyrical voice and technical skill
This week is designed for experienced writers who are keen to explore dramatic ...
- Simon Armitage
- Susan Roberts
- Guest: Eloise Whitmore
74 . SCREENWRITING
Getting under the bonnet of your story
Screenwriting is distilled storytelling. Our aim is to help you ask the right q ...
- Claire Mundell
- Colin McLaren
- Guest: Esther May Campbell
76 . THEATRE: WORK-IN-PROGRESS
For playwrights who have completed a first play, this week we will set to work ...
- Ishy Din
- Penelope Skinner
- Guest: Stef Smith
77 . CHILDREN’S TV
Anything but child's play
Explore writing TV for six to twelve-year-olds. Children’s TV has come a long ...
- Dan Berlinka
- Elly Brewer
- Guest: Sue Nott