Creative Writing Facilitator

Role: Creative Writing facilitator sought

Title: a dreamer lives for reality: social psychiatry at the science gallery

Venue: Science Gallery

Date: 2nd November 2022. 2.00pm-4.00pm

Who you’ll be working with: Laura Mitchison, an experienced oral historian, creative producer, currently undertaking a project at The Cassel Hospital in Richmond.

Theme for the workshop: The Cassel Hospital (1921- present) was established to deal with the psychological casualties of the first world war. It focused on women and families whose war trauma was neglected elsewhere. The Cassel pioneered a model of treatment called the ‘therapeutic community’ that has since been adopted all over the world.  Instead of treating patients as passively sick, patients take active responsibility for running the hospital and supporting each other’s treatment in an open democratic atmosphere. Laura and the past patients have uncovered some fascinating archival material. This includes: anonymised correspondence about patients by Dr Tom Main (an extraordinary writer) and by Maurice Craig (Virginia Woolf’s psychiatrist), creative writing and patients’ constitutions authored by former patients, archival film of patients and families undergoing treatment.

Person specification:

  • A professionally published or recognised author / writer in any form.
  • substantial and proven experience facilitating workshops with new writers and vulnerable participants
  • Awareness of trauma-informed facilitation
  • Experienced with mental health groups and / or themes
  • Able to work creatively with archival sources and to facilitate others to do so
  • Available on 2nd November 2022, or at least one other Wednesday afternoon or Saturday afternoon in November
  • Able to provide testimonials or references.


We are keen to hear from applicants with lived experience of mental health difficulties, as service users and carers. We are also keen to hear from people from Black, Asian, LGBT+ and other groups who face healthcare inequalities.

Fee: £500. Laura will take responsibility for publicising and administering workshop bookings.

To apply: Please send a CV and a brief covering email outlining how you would approach devising creative-writing workshops based on sensitive archive material. Please also address all the points in the person specification.

[email protected]

Deadline: July 11th

Three shortlisted candidates will be asked to an informal discussion over an initial telephone call (up to 50 mins). The date for this interview is provisionally set for July 13th.


More about On the Record

We specialise in oral history and co-production, and we’re run on co-operative principles

Recent works include:

Permanent public commissions for 47-49 Huntley Street, Speakers’ Corner and Brompton cemetery (co-produced with nurses, received mayoral recognition) (a youth led archive resource and sound art commission for Housmans Bookshop)


Winners of the women’s community history prize (2020) and Sound Walk September (2020) – an international sound arts award. Winners of the London Community Story award (2021). Our work has been shown in numerous film festivals and international conferences on sound art, public art, and oral history.