New Scriptorium Residencies announced, in partnership with Arbroath Festival

Working in partnership with the Lakes International Comic Art Festival and others, the Arbroath Festival is seeking applications for five funded residencies, for comic creators and other creatives, via open call, for dates between May until August 2024.

The residencies in The New Scriptorium in Arborath, Scotland, an artist designed and built structure sited inside the historical grounds of Arbroath Abbey, will run alongside a programme of events, publishing and community activities based in the Abbey grounds and the Scriptorium and into Arbroath itself.

Some of these residencies are specifically for locally based writers, poets, artists and some for practitioners in Scotland and further into the UK. The residencies are being created with partners, Hospitalfield, Historic Environment Scotland, Scottish Poetry Library and the Lakes International Comic Art Festival

Arbroath Festival are looking for practitioners to focus on language and word, visual, written and oral, to work in the stunning little Scriptorium bothy. This can be a time to develop an idea, giving you dedicated space and time or you can be inspired by the beautiful setting. They will also offer a directory of prompts based on Arbroath itself, whether it be Football or Geology, history or fishing, we have a range of people who are available to share knowledge regarding most things Arbroath. 

"The theme for this series of residencies come under the title Power and Word," say the Arbroath Festival team. "The themes of Power & Word are embedded in the History of the Abbey and the Power it held, through the transcription and distribution of the written word and its influence across this island and across Europe since its beginnings in the 13th century. What is the power of word now? Who gets to speak and who is heard? The New Scriptorium imagines the Abbey when it was a busy working environment with a library or scriptorium at its heart. The Benedictine order of monks who established the Abbey were from the French Tironensian order, each monk had their own craft or skill, literacy and the making of books was one of the most influential. The town of Arbroath grew up around the Abbey and so too; the red sandstone of the town with the streets running down to the harbour. The great Abbey, with its Round ‘O’ towering above the town, are completely inseparable formally and historically.

"The outcome for these residencies is a series of ‘Gifts’ to the town, they can be physical, they can be from a workshop, they can be live, they can be an online poem or comic book. This is where the writer/artist can see what inspiration takes hold based on their experience of this place and what they would like to offer up. This is quite a publicly engaged residency and some involvement with the local community will be expected, a reading, a conversation or a making workshop. We have wonderful connections with the local schools, charities and third sector organisations as well as fish houses, industries and the local artisan makers." 

There are art-form focussed residencies that will operate under this umbrella model, some local, some outside the Dundee postcode for poets or comic artists, as well as more open residencies across any art form, including residential time with the Arbroath Festival's partner, Hospitalfield.

The New Scriptorium is an artist designed and built structure sited inside the historical grounds of Arbroath Abbey. Designed and built by artist Bobby Niven, The New Scriptorium was initiated by Arbroath 2020 committee in partnership with Historic Environment Scotland, Hospitalfield and part of the Angus Place Partnership Programme. The  Power & Word Programme is funded by Creative Scotland. 

Here are the choices - find the one that sounds like you and apply. Applications should be made through the Submittable application portal

Available Residencies 

• Open Call for a Comic Artist with Lakes International Comic Art Festival

The New Scriptorium and the Lakes International Comic Art Festival, a national organisation are opening up a funded residency in Arbroath, a two-week residential opportunity to develop ideas, take inspiration from the breathtaking surroundings or the community. Full details and how to apply are here

• Open Call for Poets with Scottish Poetry Library

In association with Hospitalfield, the Arts Organisation and Residency Centre in Arbroath, and Historic Environment Scotland, and the Scottish Poetry Library we are inviting poets to apply for a residency based at the New Scriptorium in the grounds of historic Arbroath Abbey. Full details and how to apply are here

• ‘Any Art Form’ Open Call with Hospitalfield

The Festival has two local residencies available for practitioners in any art form: ceramics, photography, performance, print making, as long as your project or practice is concerned with ‘word’. It does not need to be a literal interpretation. They are keen to see many perspectives of the theme and your interpretation of it. Full details and how to apply are here

• If you have any questions, please email

• Find out more about the Arbroath Festival at

• Find out more about The New Scriptorium at