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I am a disabled activist, writer, poet, spoken word artist, theatre-maker and creative practitioner based in Darlington in North-East England.

Image shows Lisette in a purple t-shirt which reads disability is not a bad word, holding her walking stick with her eyes and mouth wide open.
photo description: Lisette in a purple t-shirt which reads ‘disability is not a bad word’, holding her purple walking stick with her eyes and mouth wide open. photo credit: Laura Tindall at PaperBoat Photography

This is what my awesome wordsmith and spoken word artist friend Sarah Crutwell has to say about me, and I rather like it, and her, a very big lot:

She’s the sista

Who cracks open disability labels, wide smile and huge heart,

Stomps boots on stage, talking about the years she spent

Overlooked in wheelchair.


12 squares containing in each a photo of the 12 mentees, I am one of them. The Penguin logo and the words Write Now are mid left hand side.
photo description: 12 squares containing in each a photo of the 12 mentees, I am one of them. The Penguin logo and the words Write Now are mid right hand side.

I’ve been chosen as a Penguin RHUK WriteNow Mentee, one of ten out of 1700 applicants. This is to work on my middle grade novel, The Wrecklings, which features a strong female disabled protagonist and is set in a lighthouse on the rugged North East coast where I grew up.


The twelve finalists in our finest outfits standing grouped together smiling at the camera. I am one of them. There are also two members of the CF team, Lemn Sissay and Kaerry Hudson.
photo description: The twelve Creative Future award winners in our finest outfits standing grouped together smiling at the camera. I am one of them. There are also two members of the CF team, as well as Lemn Sissay and Kerry Hudson.

I am a 2018 recipient of a Creative Future Literary Award for poetry.

Accessibility – pause the film and press the first little rectangle on the bottom right hand side for subtitles/closed captions.


I’m currently Poet in Residence for Crossing the Tees Book Festival.

image from Crossing the Tees Book Festival website - a banner with books and hands looking like butterflies and a picture of me.
photo description: image from Crossing the Tees Book Festival website – a banner with books and hands looking like butterflies and a picture of me.

My work is currently in the Let’s Discuss Disability exhibition at Thought Foundation, and as part of this I’m hosting an Evening With, celebrating Disability Arts in the North East. Book up here – FREE!


My poetry, short stories and essays have been published in both print and online journals, links available here.


I was appointed as Guest Editor for Disability Arts Online from December 2018 – February 2019. I used the platform to focus on Northern Emerging Disabled Artists. You can read the commissioned articles here.


Lisette stands pen in hand with purple doc boots covered in red ladybirds. She is wearing a white boiler suit covered in giant word bubble questions such as - Who is MIMA?
photo description: Lisette stands pen in hand with purple doc boots covered in red ladybirds. She is wearing a white boiler suit covered in giant word bubble questions such as – Who is MIMA?

As a creative practitioner I specialise in working with people who are not fully represented in the mainstream. Projects include working with older people on Arts Council England supported project ‘Celebrating Age‘ with Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (MIMA) and Thirteen Housing, on bespoke writing projects for diverse groups, and as Movement Facilitator for ‘Occupation‘ by Pauline Heath, produced by Little Cog performed on the main stage at ARC Stockton.

Thank you for a wonderful workshop journey. Your warm up got the creative cells going, the quickfire focused my thoughts and then the stream of brilliant exercises made me fasten my literary seatbelt and enjoy the ride! A wonderful safe and accessible environment to write and share.

Well planned. Beautifully executed. Exhilarating. Thoughtful & caring. Thank you very much.


Black & white photo. Lisette sits on a stool on stage in front of a mic, spotlight on her, left arm reaching up.
photo description: Black & white photo. Lisette sits on a stool on stage in front of a mic, spotlight on her, left arm reaching up. photo credit: Ken Drew

My theatre and spoken word performance work seeks to make the invisible visible. I perform frequently on the spoken word scene delivering passionate lyrical pieces about disability, mental health and politics. Recent projects include ‘Deranged Poetesses: Mothers’, and Between Waves with Archipelago to produce an exciting new collaboration which resulted in an EP which is available here.

Accessibility – pause the film and press the first little rectangle on the bottom right hand side for subtitles/closed captions. 


You can find out about upcoming events here, and all the different strands to my practice by clicking on the menus above.