North East Connected

Giants and mermaids in care home creative writing class

TEESSIDE care home residents have been flexing their literary muscles during virtual creative writing workshops.

Residents at Ingleby Care Home, on Lamb Lane, Ingleby Barwick, have been writing about giants, mermaids and postmen as part of the weekly activity.

The workshops are run by Liv Hunt from Unforgettable Experiences, a Darlington-based social enterprise launched in 2020 to support older people.

Residents interact with Liv via video conferencing software, where she asks them to imagine themselves in the situation of their characters and to describe their feelings, the sights, sounds, smells and tastes.

Liv then uses the residents’ descriptions to complete short stories, including “Frozen Lady of the Sea”, “The Giant of Keilder”, and “Postman Pat is Coming to Town”.

Dorothy Atkinson, one of the participating residents, said: “It’s good as it gets you up and your brain thinking so early in a morning. I’ve enjoyed making the different stories. I’ve found it really interesting.”

Fellow resident John Hynes said: “It’s been really good. It’s nice to be able to make things up but also to share our own stories.”

Kirsty Walsh, activities coordinator at Ingleby Care Home, said: “The workshops have been really good for the residents, as they’ve got their imaginations going.

“They’ve put themselves in the photograph on the screen and described what they think they could see, smell, taste, and feel. They’ve all found it really interesting.”

Liv Hunt, from Unforgettable Experiences, said: “I’ve really enjoyed getting creative with the residents at Ingleby Care Home and they have created a beautiful collection of stories. So far, we have created folk stories, murder mysteries, comedies, poems, you name it.

“I’m so pleased that this work has been able to continue online. We’ve been able to escape to the world of story for an hour a week and it gets us talking, listening and laughing – we definitely need more opportunities for that in these times.”

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