We are committed to creating quality artistic experiences that challenge and question accepted perceptions of difference, communication and the dementias.

The work of Living Words in care settings and the community is the inspiration for our wider programme of publications, films, performance, literature events and festivals.


We aim to share the inside world of people whose voices are not usually heard, so that together we can all learn to see each other person, not labels or diagnoses that might be put on us.


We aim to challenge perceptions of dementia, increase understanding and awareness and promote integration. In our works the words of people living with a dementia take centre stage.


We are simultaneously committed to our artists are able to reflect on their own experiences and practices and create work in this way. 


We are also interested in how other artists express and represent our work, to further the dissemination of both good practice and enable the voices of individuals to be heard by more people.


We have had a tremendous amount of output 2020 - 2023, and are currently updating this site. On Jan 3rd 2023, you can see our BBC Ideas film 'Overcoming self-harm' by clicking here.

Our proud partnerships include:

  • BBC ideas
  •  Artswork
  •  NHS Kent and Medway Self-harm and suicide prevention partnership
  • South Bank Centre
  •  Kent libraries
  •  East Side Institute
  •  Created Out of Mind, at Wellcome
  •  Westminster Arts
  •  Folkestone Fringe
  •  Sick of the Fringe

Some of the places our work has been presented:

  •  BBC Radio 3
  • Royal Academy of Music
  •  Central St Martins
  •  Wellcome
  •  British Library
  •  Quarterhouse, Folkestone
  •  Stratford Literary Festival
  •  Tabernacle, London
  •  Free Word Centre
  •  Westminister Arts – various venues across Westminster
  •  Toynbee
  •  EU Commission
  •  Cockpit Theatre


Living Warriors at the Silver Screen

Past Production

Back in March, we had the friends and family screening of our LIVING WARRIOR short films for cinema at Screen Cinema Folkestone

The 7 message films, co-created with each individual Warrior, are intended to be message films in amongst trailers and ads before the main feature.

Each film shares one Warrior’s story of mental health and coming close to taking their own lives – and how they survived. These are films of strength, survival and realness, showing that anybody can be taken to the brink. We never know what is going on in anyone else’s head.

The response was almost overwhelming. The resounding feedback – these films need to be seen. Since then, we have been speaking with distributors and cinema groups to work out how they can be screened.

Most importantly, from tomorrow (7th Sept 2020), the films are going to be shown on BBC Ideas and across the BBC for World Suicide Prevention Day.

Keep Living.

Thanks to the Warriors, crew and film supporters, as well as Peter Wolf who photographed the event.

Thanks to Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership TrustKent County Council #FHDC Folkestone Town Council UNIVERSALFIREWORKS.COM

Folkestone Living Advent Calendar - Living Words

Past Production

Thank you to everyone who came out in the rain to Steep Street Coffee House for Folkestone Living Advent Calendar on Monday 16th December, 2019. It was the first time we have done anything ‘family friendly’. Thanks to JimJam Arts for the opportunity and support. And a big thank you to John Offen and his family.

Spreading the words of those with a dementia living in care homes, plus a sprinkle of ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’. “Give the gift of your words, thoughts and listening this Christmas…”

Honey's Happening

Past Production

This event took place on Thursday 11th July 2019.

THANK YOU to everyone who made the effort to come and support us last night at our New York fundraiser performance. Delighted to say we reached our target for the evening! One step closer to NY…

Thanks especially to HoneysHappening for so kindly donating the show to us, and also huge thanks to Cheryl and the Folkestone Quarterhouse team for donating the venue. Onwards!

The latest 5 star ***** review of its run at Komedia Brighton is in and says: “Honey’s Happening is a wonderful immersive theatre experience, hilarious, tender, bonkers and thoughtful all in one. It is marvellously performed by two fabulous actors. Go and See it now”

Created Out of Mind partnerships

Past Production

As part of our partnership working with Created Out of Mind at Wellcome, the words of people living with a dementia that appear in our anthology ‘The Things Between Us’  were set to music by three of the winners of the BBC Proms Inspire programme. Their winning commissions were played live on Radio 3 as part of Radio 3’s Wellcome hosted ‘Why Music? The Key to Memory’ weekend. The composers’ mentor Kerry Andrews’ new commission, that responds to the words of a man with semantic dementia, who spent time with Created Out Of Mind lead Dr. Seb Crutch also premiered. Singing the pieces was the fantastic National Youth Choirs of Great Britain Fellowship Octet.

We were delighted to be involved, through our founder Susanna being a team member at Created Out of Mind. Thank you to all involved and love to all of those whose words feature.

Listen here on player, until 13th November: The Choir, Presented by Sara Mohr-Pietsch.


Current Production

October 19th – 22nd we are curating events at Customs House: Urban Room, which is a Folkestone Triennial artwork by Diane Dever and The Decorators.

Conceived and curated by Susanna Howard & Living Words

Explore the boundaries of speech and how language affects our perceptions of ourselves and others by – eavesdropping on conversations; watching films; taking part in workshops; rewriting the UK citizenship test; attending a performance lecture; hearing the words of writers declaring where they live; and listening to a record playing the voices of Folkestone.

Living Write!
19 October, 11am – 12.30pm. Free. No booking required
A workshops led by Bloodaxe Books poet and Living Words writer Shazea Quraishi, offering a chance for you to get your Folkestone story out. No writing experience or skills needed. Some pieces maybe shared at Sunday’s event…if you want that!

What Sometimes Happens When We Listen
20 October, 6 – 6.45pm. Free. No booking required
Performance lecture by Susanna Howard, founder of Living Words and proud Folkestonian. Expect personal tales, record playing and eyeliner. The performance lecture will be about 20 mins, followed by drinks and conversation.

Punctuate your Life!
21 October, 3-4pm. Free. No booking required
Local boy and hugely popular workshop leader and writer Philip Cowell – author of This Is Me, Full Stop (Penguin, Nov 2017) – leads a playful workshop exploring punctuation.

21 October, 5.30-6.30pm
A relaxed bringing together of material collected across the days, possibly including a visual mapping dance, a loud hailer and lots of chalk.

Accentuate the Positive
22 October, 11am-12.30pm
Coffee and conversation exploring local accents, vocabulary and communication.

Something to Declare
22 October, 5-6pm
Performance readings from local and national poets, including local beat boxer Tormented Vocals. The session will explore cultural identity and heritage, and what it means to declare one’s home and nationhood. If you would like to declare yourself – come along with your words, or email ahead to let us know:

Any questions drop us a message at

Created Out Of Mind

Current Production

We are delighted to be a collaborative partner of Created Out of Mind at Wellcome from Oct 2016 to July 2018.

In collaboration with people experiencing a dementia and those affected by dementia, Susanna has made the ‘Talking Life’ podcasts, to be launched Oct 2017.  These conversations can also be heard during the slow radio broadcast as part of the BBC Radio 3 Wellcome takeover weekend, 13th – 15th October 2017.

See our Facebook page for up-to-date pictures and info.


Current Production

An exploratory 11minute long performance film that reflects upon founder and artistic director Susanna’s decade of working as a writer up close and personal with people experiencing life with an advanced dementia.  Made with Zbigniew Kotkiewicsz, the film was premiered at Quarterhouse, Folkestone in May and shown at Wellcome on 27th July 7pm. It will be showing in the Folkestone Triennial Customs House/Urban Room, 19th – 22nd October, times TBC.


Current Production

As a collaborator on COOM at Wellcome, Susanna has been recording conversations with people living with a dementia. These conversations are framed around a universal theme, and also use objects and images from the Wellcome Collection archive.  Available to listen through your podcast apps and online from the end of September. For more information on COOM, click here: 


Past Production

How does it feel to question everything you know and believe? Where Now? came off the back of a nursing home residency working with participants who are experiencing dementia and sensory issues.  The piece is an exploration around the theme of consciousness and dementia. Devised and performed with Living Words Artists Astrid Goldsmith, Shazea Quraishi and Pippa Wildwood and directed by Susanna Howard.


2016 Work in progress sharing Folkstone Quaterhouse- Normal? Festival Of The Brain

Here is a video about WHERE NOW:


Past Production

Crackpot is a funny, bold, insightful theatre show featuring the words of people experiencing dementia and living in care homes in London and Kent.  These words, from people who are often perceived to have lost reason, are mixed with anecdotes from Susanna Howard’s years working in care homes in an astonishing and inspiring way.  Some people think she’s a crackpot, then they see the results.


National Care Forum annual conference

Patients’ Association Gold Standard Event


Normal? Festival Of The Brain

Here is a video about Crackpot :


Past Production

Readings to share our work and practice have been produced at British Library; Tabernacle theatre, London;  Free Word Centre; English Penn; Dementia Research Centre; and others.

Our work with the poet James Berry OBE has been profiled at events across London as well as featuring on Radio4.


Past Production

WEAVE brings together Susanna’s work with Living Words for care homes commissioned by Westminster Arts and her personal narrative that brings added insight, laughs, bizarre coincidence and bewilderment.


The Cockpit Theatre – Arts and Wellbeing week

Westminster Council House – London Creativity and Wellbeing Week

Transport Theatre

‘A thought-provoking, generous and honest insight into Dementia and people who care for people with Dementia. Weave makes you reconsider your views on what you thought Dementia is and makes you requestion your understandings of subject.’ Katherine Lowe, Central School of Speech and Drama Tutor

The Tree

Past Production

The Tree is inspired by dementia consultant, psycho-therapist and trainer Danuta Lipinska, and Susanna Howard’s research into consciousness.  Focussing on the relationship between a woman with young onset Alzheimer’s and a psychotherapist who longs for change in her life.  The play, written in 2010 received a residency at the National Theatre Studio with actors Gina Mckee, Pamela Miles, Nick Fletcher, Suzanne Burden and Paul Bentall. Readings available.

About us

Living Words is an Arts and Literature charity transforming lives and relationships since 2007.

Call us: +44 (0)7967 502 506
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