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Ruth Borthwick, Chief Executive and Artistic Director

We are celebrating our 50th birthday in 2018. It’s an exciting moment in our history, and I’d like to take a moment to thank everyone who has made Arvon what it is, a unique resource for writers at all stages of their writing life. In its consistent support for writers over half a century, Arvon has earned the epithet ‘the home of creative writing’.

We would love to hear your stories of Arvon for publication in a celebratory booklet, capturing your reflections, feelings and thoughts about what Arvon means to you. We’d like this to be a bumper collection of writing from across the years, so please dig into your memories and bombard us with your stories.

As well as reminiscing, we are looking forward to offering new things. We’ve listened to what some of you have told us about wanting to come to Arvon, but not being able to do so for a whole week, and we’ve introduced shorter courses for you to get a taste of Arvon.

We know you value highly the one-to-one access to tutors Arvon provides, and in our anniversary year we will be launching tutorials online to offer personal support, wherever you are.

Also, we want to offer more support to younger writers so we will give everyone between 18-25 years free access to our online writing advice and special offers on courses with late availability.

In 2018 we are proud to present a festival of 89 weeks of creative writing courses and retreats, and new dates for what has proven to be an exceptionally popular new offer, our Writers Retreats at the Clockhouse. There is a huge variety of courses and retreats to suit everyone, from those of you who are beginners to those who wish to develop their craft.

In a year full of exceptional courses, there are a few highlights to pick out. We feature a timely new course on writing Political Non-Fiction tutored by Melissa Benn and Marina Cantacuzino. We use the extraordinary poem sequence Remains of Elmet as an inspiration for Writing with Ted Hughes, tutored by poet Steve Ely and Christopher Reid. Finally, Songwriting, with Kathryn Williams and Magic Numbers’ Michele and Romeo Stodart, will be ringing from the rafters at Totleigh Barton, Arvon’s birthplace.

If you want to help us celebrate our 50th anniversary in style, please consider donating to our grant fund. We are looking to bring twice as many people to Arvon who can’t otherwise afford it. Your support is instrumental in achieving this goal.

Join us in raising a glass to toast Arvon’s co-founders, John Fairfax and John Moat, and Arvon’s next 50 years!


View the 2018 course programme here