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Bursary Policy

Writing West Midlands (which runs Birmingham Literature Festival and Spark Young Writers) would like financial situation not to be a barrier in developing your or your child’s love of writing.

We are funded by Arts Council England to work in the West Midlands region to encourage and support writing in all its forms.


Writing West Midlands is able to offer some limited bursary places for:

  • Spark Young Writers groups
  • Short courses and workshops run by Writing West Midlands
  • Attendance to National Writers’ Conference
  • Some Birmingham Literature Festival writing workshops and events


In order to receive a bursary, you must be working, living or studying in the West Midlands region.

If you are unsure which region you’re in, please see the TLC Free Reads guidance, which follows Arts Council funding.

In addition, you will normally:

  • Be in receipt of some form of Government assistance, for example Universal Credit, Jobseeker’s Allowance, Working Tax Credits or Pension Credit.


  • If you are a student, you would normally benefit from extra financial support from your university or college.


  • If you are applying for a child, the child would be eligible for Pupil Premium or Free School Meals.


Generally, we are able to offer one bursary per person, per financial year (April to March.)


How To Apply

If you feel you would benefit from a bursary place, please send a short paragraph of information about your circumstances to We don’t require financial records nor any statement from a government agency.

We will never share your information and once we have made a decision and let you know either way, we will destroy your application and won’t share your bursary information with anyone else.

We also won’t let anyone know you are in receipt of a bursary if you are awarded one.