The Doctoral College launched its first Doctoral Writing Retreat on Monday 9th January 2023 at Leigh Park Hotel, ,a classical Georgian country house hotel set in peaceful and picturesque grounds, in Bradford-on-Avon. The retreat was organised as part of Research Focus Week, supporting doctoral students to dedicate some focused time for their research projects.

The retreat provided students with an opportunity to write in a supportive environment. The day was structured to allow four hours for distraction-free writing alongside dedicated break times which allowed delegates to re-energise by taking a walk in the grounds or network with others to share successes as the day went on.

There were many successes by the end of the day. Here are some of the achievements that the delegates described:

I’ve written almost the number of words needed for a short article (5000 words).

After all the reading I’ve been stuck on, I managed to use the last session to cohesively spell out my own ideas by writing.

Worked for all sessions without going on irrelevant and massive tangents (which is rare when I’m writing).

I wrote 3000 words! And I wrote up a really tricky bit of my results section which I was nervous about.

Wrote a section of my thesis that I’ve been putting off for months.

Doctoral Writing Retreats will continue to be offered through the Doctoral College during Research Focus Weeks. There are a variety of other activities that doctoral students can take part in to help them with their own self-motivation. Why not get involved and give something a go!