New Writers – Awarded Bursaries to Write for the Project

The Big Art and Storytelling Tall Ships Project has been awarded funding from The Arts Council and local arts funding body FEAST.

We have selected four outstanding new writers to be awarded bursaries to write new pieces inspired by John Dyer’s painting. Read the new stories now.

“Splash” by Alex Small  I  “A Mermaid Tale” by S. R. Cunliffe
“Operation Accordion” by Fiona Egglestone I “The Rat Man” by Tracey Bowers


More about the Arts Council funding and the bursaries that have been awarded.

John Frankland Creative Producer for the project explained, “This recognition for the creative value of the project means that we can do so much more and deliver some exciting outcomes for the children who engage with the project and the visitors who come to see these fabulous ships.” 

One of the immediate effects is that the project has been able to award four bursaries to alumni creative writing students, in conjunction with Falmouth University. These new writers beginning their careers in Cornwall have already spent some time writing their interpretation of John Dyer’s painting celebrating the 2014 Tall Ships Regatta in Falmouth.

Alumni will also support the project workshops which are being provided free to schools across Cornwall, allowing children to gain a creative insight into how they can complete their own writing. Kirsty Davies, UK Recruitment & Outreach Coordinator for Falmouth University said, “It’s a brilliant opportunity for local pupils to benefit from the expertise of up-and-coming writers. The workshops will be led by recent graduates who are really passionate about their craft and are eager to impart their insight to local schools.” 

Suzie Cunliffe, one of the four graduates engaged with the project comments “Having the tall ships visit Falmouth is such a momentous occasion and as a writer, working and living in Cornwall, I am tremendously proud to be able to contribute to the creative tour de force of creativity being generated around the event by this project. John’s painting conveys an amazing sense of celebration and is incredibly detailed and alive with characters and inspirations for stories. I have started work on my interpretation and I am excited too about helping groups of children from across Cornwall to explore their reactions and craft their own tall tales.”

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Above: Writer Suzie Cunliffe, one of the bursary award winners, finishing her mermaid story at Falmouth Art Gallery with John Dyer’s painting “Tall Ships & Small Ships 2014”.

Falmouth Art Gallery has been inundated with responses from local schools to take part in these workshops, with some schools arranging for every child to participate. “This level of response endorses what a huge creative offer this project is for children to engage with, they are being encouraged not only to paint but to write stories, poems and even complete a play!” said Henrietta Boex, Director of Falmouth Art Gallery.

Artist in Residence John Dyer added “I am absolutely thrilled that my creative work and the work of The John Dyer Gallery have helped to secure this significant arts funding for The BIG Art & Storytelling Tall Ships project. It is a wonderful feeling to be able to support and work alongside the creative talents of actors & writers and to be able to award bursaries to up and coming writers from Falmouth University. It is exactly how we imagined the project would work and dreams do come true.” 


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