Inner Room is a project that creates space for people to be creative. It is rooted in the Christian faith, welcoming people of all faiths and none. Run by a poet, its focus at the moment is on creative writing.

Inner Room
Do join us for the next phase of Inner Room, this autumn. To find out more, email 

Inner Room believes that:

  • Everyone is creative (including you)
  • Everyone can approach universal truths through the particular details of their lives
  • Everyone is invited to be creative by a creative God

If this resonates with you, please read on.




* Please note that Inner Room is happening online at the moment because of COVID19 *

What does Inner Room do?

Phase one of Inner Room, which runs until October 1st, 2020, is happening on Zoom, with a larger poetry reading group and three smaller writing groups, all meeting monthly. Sessions include:

  • What is Poetry?
  • What does Poetry do?
  • Poetry and Prayer
  • Faith, Doubt and Poetry
  • English Poetry – an overview
  • The Creative Process – a series of creative writing workshops
  • Inner Room on Zoom – an online poetry reading on National Poetry Day (October 1)

We’re sorry there are no spaces left in phase one, but phase two is in the planning stages and will open for bookings during September. If you’d like to know more, you can add your name to the mailing list now by emailing


Inner Room workshop March 2020
The view from inside Patch a few words together, in March 2020


Inner Room launched in March 2020 with a one-day poetry workshop at The Old Deanery, in Exeter, for members of Devon’s spiritual direction network. Patch a few words together – a title taken from the Mary Oliver poem, Praying – looked at how to use poems in spiritual accompaniment and offered the opportunity to explore the creative process through writing. Prior to that, Inner Room ran a pilot workshop on Poetry and prayer in St Stephen’s Church on National Poetry Day 2019.


Inner Room workshop 2019
Where it all began: the workshop on Poetry & Prayer in 2019


Why the name?

Two reasons. It suggests that feeling of inner spaciousness – what psychologists call ‘flow’ – which is such a helpful way of being when you’re creating something. And you may also recognise the reference to the bible verse Matthew 6:6 – which in some translations says: when you pray, enter your inner room and close the door. So we hope Inner Room is a place where you can relax and give your creative self some private space, aware (if you’re a Christian) that you’re in the presence of a loving, supportive, creative God.



In church jargon, Inner Room is a ‘pioneer lay ministry’ from the Parish of Central Exeter, facilitated by the poet Helen Evans with the support of a team drawn from the parish and beyond, which includes the Rector, Sheila Swarbrick. It will run initially until Spring 2021 and be evaluated then. It was inspired in part by two courses: Exploring Christian Spirituality, run by the Diocese of Exeter, and Foundations in Christian Ministry, run by the South West Ministry Training College. Inner Room is one way the parish offers the breathing space that’s part of its mission, within its overall ministry of love and reconciliation, and in line with its commitment to being an inclusive church where all are welcomed.



If you’d like to join the mailing list or if you have any questions, please feel free to contact Inner Room by email at

Inner Room workshop March 2020
The door to one inner room: at our March 2020 workshop