The residential takes place in July at The Ted Hughes Arvon Centre Lumb Bank
Sixteen students who have shown great potential during the academic year are awarded fully-funded places to attend an idyllic week-long writing retreat in rural West Yorkshire.
The summer residential is a rare and valuable opportunity for promising students to develop their confidence, creativity and writing ability. Attending can be a life-changing experience, particularly for young people considering writing as a future career.
All First Story participating schools are invited to nominate one student to receive one of sixteen residential places. Nominated students are asked to submit a short (300 words) personal statement, outlining why the summer residential would benefit their writing.
We select up to sixteen students to receive a fully-funded place each, including accommodation, catering, and a supervised programme of teaching and learning activities. The programme is led by our most experienced writers, supported by First Story staff acting in loco parentis.
“If you’re feeling nervous about going to the residential, know this: within an hour of getting there, you’ll feel at home. One of the most important things about it, as well as the writing, is feeling like you belong.”CAROLINE BIRD, POET
Living and writing alongside their peers, students take part in group writing workshops and one-on-one tutorials, drawing inspiration from the beautiful and peaceful location. New friendships are forged and, though independence is encouraged, everyone is expected to cook and eat together. We also encourage time away from social media and mobile phones.
Learning from acclaimed professional writers, students will receive personalised feedback on their work. On the final evening, everyone is invited to share their writing with the group at a celebratory performance night.
“I’ve learned a technique of writing I will cherish forever – and I can’t believe how welcomed and safe I felt at Lumb Bank!”