About

Commonword started in the late 1970s with the aim of offering working class writers the chance to write their own stories using their own voices. Over the years there have been focused efforts to encourage writing in specific parts of the population underrepresented in aspects of British literature. The Commonword archive brings together writers with links to Manchester and north west of England. The writers in this archive includes those who write as a pastime, those who have made writing their career, those who write to express themselves, those who write for survival and countless others.

Here is some of what we have in the archive:

    • published poems and short stories
    • published debut novels
    • publicity material
    • photographs
    • videos and short films
    • interviews by and about Commonword writers
    • records of writers attending Commonword workshops

Please contact us for the following:

  • To view the archive materials (This will not be currently possible under covid-19-related lockdown)
  • To donate material to the archive
  • To supply us with more information about the writers, writer groups and work featured on this site
  • To get your image, work or information about you to be taken down from this site we have been unable to trace all people mentioned in this archive

Special thanks to Daniel Holden, the Commonword Cultureword team: Charlotte Maxwell, Mahboobeh Rajabi, Martin De Mello, Peter Kalu, Cheryl Martin and Nina Roach; Clare Ramsaran, Sharon Raymond, Deanne Heron, Linford Sweeney, Drew Ellery, Ruth Tait at the Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Archive;  Anjum Malik, Dipali Das, Mark Bodner and Marion Hewitt at the North West Film Archive; Mish Green, Corey Benson, Susan Bennett, Efea Rutlin, Grace Desouza, Farid Norat, Fabiha Chowdhury, Tallulah Howarth, Shea Macfarlane, Jonathan Ferryman, Jennifer Edant and Kevin Otoo.

This project has been supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.