The Dark Angels programme is a series of residential writing courses tutored by John Simmons, Stuart Delves and Jamie Jauncey at different locations throughout the UK and Europe.  Started in 2004, at Totleigh Barton in Devon, these highly successful courses look at how to use words more engagingly and imaginatively within the business environment.

Merton College
Merton College
Highgreen Manor
Highgreen Manor
Finca El Tornero de Abajo
Finca el Tornero
Halzephron House
Halzephron House

Intensive Foundation Course:
Highgreen Manor, Northumberland
6 – 9 May 2015
Places available

Advanced Course:
Finca el Tornero de Abajo, Andalucia, Spain
4 – 9 September 2015
Places available

Merton College, Oxford
8 – 11 April 2015
By invitation

Intensive Foundation Course:
Halzephron House, Cornwall
12 – 15 October 2015
Places available

Who is Dark Angels for?

Dark Angels is for anyone whose job involves writing. Communications, brand management, corporate affairs, marketing, general management, and many areas of management and creative consultancy – these are all typical areas of work for Dark Angels students. Others are freelance business writers.

Dark Angels students have come from organisations including: Arts Council of Wales, Bang & Olufsen, Barclays, The BBC, BP, British Airways, Carlsberg Breweries, Clore Leadership Programme, Corporate Culture, Elmwood, The Environment Council, Granada Media, Innocent, Interbrand, Lever Faberge, Mazars, National Library of Wales, O2, Penguin Books, QI, Royal Society of Arts, Scottish Arts Council, Sotheby's Europe, Swiss Reinsurance, Three.

We also run bespoke Dark Angels courses for companies and organisations.


Book cover: Room 121

A novel by the Dark Angels Collective

The world's first-ever 15-author collective novel, it's a cracking good read and you can order it here!

Listen to the BBC World Service interview here (26.40 mins in).

"A great road movie in prose."

Our 10th birthday party

Table and booklet

In April 2014 we celebrated our 10th anniversary with a dinner at the Goldsmith's Centre in London, attended by 70 former Dark Angels students. The guest speaker was Peter Day of Radio 4's In Business programme and a very jolly time was had by all.

Stuart and Jamie

In a surprise presentation at the end of the evening, John, Stuart and Jamie each received a copy of The Angel's Share, a specially designed, leather-bound book of writing and photos from all the courses. Glasses were raised, witticisms exchanged and tears shed.

A little Dark Angels wisdom!

Book cover: Room 121

Room 121 takes the form of a dialogue between John and Jamie (with a foreword by Stuart) – a real masterclass in business writing and communication.

Click here to order..

"Every member of the Scottish civil service should be given a copy."

– Sunday Herald

Press coverage

BBC Radio Scotland: Business Scotland
BBC Radio 4: In Business
Financial Times
Scotland on Sunday
Sunday Herald

Recent blogs

The Secret Archaeologist
Tales From A Small Island
Neil's Notebook
The Penguin Blog
Writers' & Artists' Blog


John and Jamie give a workshop at the Sigtuna Literature Festival, Sweden

Alberto German, Sculptor, filmed by members of the 2012 Advanced Course, Aracena

A Dark Angels pechakucha


26 Fruits
A Few Kind Words
Dark Angels on Twitter


"Teaches storytelling techniques as well as how to translate unintelligible management speak into plain English"
– Financial Times
"The course is 'hard-wired' into a real business benefit"
– Scotland on Sunday
"While the atmosphere is relaxed, the writing exercises are the mental equivalent of tightrope walking"
– Sunday Herald

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Ivy Cottage Industries