Poetry & Spoken Word


Poet and spoken word artist.

Born in Blackburn, lives in Bristol.

Wheelchair user and disability rights champion.

Photo: Tomshot Photography

Photo: Tomshot Photography


Stephen was born in Blackburn, Lancashire. In 1996, aged 16, he experienced a life changing accident whilst sledging in the snow and is now paralysed from below the waist. Stephen writes extensively but not exclusively about life as a wheelchair user. 

He has since left his tyre tracks at events across the UK and at festivals such as Shambala, Womad, Verve Poetry Festival and Lyra Bristol Poetry Festival. In addition, Stephen has read internationally in San Antonio, Texas. Whilst many poetry nights are not accessible to Stephen and his wheelchair, he aims to make his poetry accessible to all.

In March 2019 Stephen’s first poetry collection, Only Air, was published by Burning Eye Books. His poems have been anthologised by Verve Poetry Press, Hachette Children’s Group, The Poetry Business and Squares & Rebels.  

When not writing and performing poetry, Stephen spends his days working for the NHS. Stephen hasn’t won any awards for his poetry but did once win some salted peanuts for colouring in when he was eight years old.

Stephen’s next aim is to write a play and a follow up collection to Only Air. He can be found on most social media channels via @spokeandpencil. Additionally, he is a 2019 Fellow of the literary organisation Zoeglossia.