About Us

Writers’ Centre Norwich is a literature development agency based in Norwich, England’s first UNESCO City of Literature. Our mission is to explore the artistic and social impact of creative writing through pioneering and collaborative projects regionally, nationally and internationally. We are audience-focused and artform-led, with an agenda of excellence, engagement and experimentation.

We believe that literature, creative writing, reading and literary translation can open doors to new worlds; they can liberate, entertain, challenge and transform lives. 

WCN is undergoing an ambitious period of growth and expansion. In April 2015 we moved into the historic Dragon Hall; a Grade 1 listed medieval trading hall dating from around 1430, renowned for its spectacular timber crown-post roof and intricately carved and painted dragon. Our aim is to develop a National Centre for Writing which will open its doors in 2018, and will work across written forms and across the country for writers and readers alike. The NCW will be one of the most significant developments in the literature sector in the UK this century.

Writers’ Centre Norwich board members are: David Gilbert (Chair), Ellah Allfrey, Rachel Calder,  Chris Gribble, Pam Henderson, James Slinger, Ali Smith, Yvonne Tasker, Bill Thompson, Helen Wilson and Andrew Yuill. 

Board observers are: Nikki Rotsos (Norwich City Council), Mari Martin (Norfolk County Council) and John Prebble (Arts Council England, East). Together with the University of East Anglia, they represent our key supporters.

We welcome you to keep in touch by signing up for information and telling us a bit about who you are. If you'd like to get in touch with a member of staff then please visit the ‘Team’ page below.

Writers’ Centre Norwich is a registered charity (registered charity number: 1110725).

History

WCN, formerly known as the New Writing Partnership, was launched in 2003 as a groundbreaking collaboration between UEA, Arts Council England, Norwich City Council and Norfolk County Council. It was a unique cultural experiment with the aim of extending the remarkable literary activity of UEA by placing it in the city where it historically belonged and socially, would have the most impact. 

In 2009 we changed our name and our visual identity (designed by Norwich company The Click) with assistance from the Arts Council England funded AmbITion project. By this time the organisation had evolved to become a driving force behind the rapid development of the city’s creative industries and a leading national literature development agency with a special interest in the social, economic and cultural impact of creative writing.

Dragon Hall

Dragon Hall was built by a merchant called Robert Toppes in around 1430 and was at the heart of his international trading empire. 

Thanks to the outstanding stewardship of Norfolk & Norwich Heritage Trust who were the previous tenants of Dragon Hall for 25 years, many improvements have been made to ensure that this beautiful building continues to function as a rich and vibrant part of the community. From 2015, it will host a year-round programme of literary events and workshops and will be a marketplace for the exchange of stories, ideas, passions and enthusiasms.

Support us

As a UK registered charity, we rely on the generosity of our supporters to make our work possible. To make a donation, or to find out how else you can get involved, please visit our Support Us page.