Case Study: ‘And the Doctor Said…………’

Chrissie 5   
SU Lead

Mark Webster



amount received


           AHRC £20k

Project Partners

 Keele University, Dr Alannah Tomkins,

Northumbria University, Dr Geoff Walton

Project Researcher: Dr Jackie Reynolds

Unique Media Productions

A team of creative practitioners: Maria Whatton, Deborah McAndrew, Dave Reeves, Chrissie Hall.

Project /Scheme title AHRC Research Networking Grant: ‘And the Doctor Said…..’



 ‘And the Doctor Said….’ is an innovative research project, which uses creative writing as a way of exploring people’s experiences of healthcare in North Staffordshire. A series of workshops led by creative writers, playwrights and storytellers took place during 2013 in four different community venues in and around Stoke-on-Trent. Through creative writing, the participants shared, reflected on and wrote about their health experiences. The activities and writing drew upon their own personal experience and local knowledge. It is a ‘Connected Communities’ project, a cross-Council programme designed to help us to understand the changing nature and contexts of ‘community’ and the role of communities in enhancing and sustaining quality of life.
When did it run February 2012-February 2014
  • 10 community workshops resulting in a wide range of creative writing
  • A series of short films documenting people’s involvement in the project
  • A 20 minute audio-documentary
  • A website to disseminate project information and films
  • A published book containing all of the writing from the workshops (freely available)
  • A high quality exhibition that has been displayed in community venues
  • A range of positive outcomes for the research participants, as evidenced through evaluation material and the project films.
  • On-going partnership working between both the academic and the non-academic partners.

This project is highly participatory, directly involving participants in both the production and the dissemination of the research. This has been valuable and has also presented a range of interesting dilemmas and challenges to be addressed. The learning from these challenges is being shared in the project dissemination.

Future / ongoing activities as a result of this project We continue to disseminate this project at a wide range of events and conferences.Planned publications include a methodological journal article and a co-authored chapter in an edited book about creativity in the context of primary care and mental health and ageing.We are also developing a funding bid for AHRC follow-on funding, in order to further develop the impact of this work, particularly in relation to the training and professional development of medical staff. The follow-on project will focus on developing two-way dialogue between health professionals and research participants.
Top tips for working with this funder –
  • Focus on innovative, interdisciplinary collaborations.
  • Focus on involving non-academic partners e.g. artists/creative practitioners
  • Make use of a wide range of networking events linked to different projects
How easy was the application process? Applications are quite lengthy and time-consuming.   Support from colleagues in ECD is invaluable, especially if you are new to the J-es system.
Think this project looks interesting? What Next For further support from the External projects team contact: or call 01785 353774
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