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Phil Bowen

Phil Bowen

b. 1949

Born in Liverpool in 1949, Phil Bowen was heavily influenced by the lively Mersey scene of the sixties and seventies, which produced the Beatles and the Mersey Beat Poets. He has edited two poetry...
Mandy Coe

Mandy Coe

Based in the north-west of England, Mandy Coe writes poetry for adults and children. A Hawthornden Fellow, she is winner of several prizes, including the Ilkley and Ted Waters Memorial Prize. She was...
Berlie Doherty

Berlie Doherty

b. 1943

Twice-winner of the Carnegie Medal for children’s literature, and one-time runner-up (no author has won the award three times), Berlie Doherty has written over 60 books including novels for children...
Helen Farish

Helen Farish

b. 1962

Helen Farish was born in Cumbria in 1962, where she now lives. She has been a Fellow at Hawthornden International Centre for Writers and was the first female Poet in Residence at the Wordsworth Trust...
Paul Farley

Paul Farley

b. 1965

Paul Farley (b.1965) began winning awards with Poetry Review's Geoffrey Dearmer Prize, took the Forward Prize for Best First Collection with The Boy from the Chemist is Here to See You, and won the...
Elaine Feinstein

Elaine Feinstein

b. 1930

Elaine Feinstein (b.1930) is from Bootle, Lancashire and was educated at Newnham College, Cambridge. She has worked as an editor, a university lecturer and a journalist. From 1976 she has lived on...
John Foster

John Foster

b. 1941

John Foster is one of the most highly regarded and successful contemporary children’s’ poets and poetry anthologists in the UK, and has countless publications to his name. Junior Education has...
Chrissie Gittins

Chrissie Gittins

Chrissie Gittins' poetry for children is rich and varied in both form and subject; her three collections are bursting with everything from limericks to list poems, shape-poems to songs, and manage to...
Jen Hadfield

Jen Hadfield

b. 1978

In 2008, Jen Hadfield became the youngest person to win the TS Eliot Prize with her collection Nigh-No-Place. Judge Tobias Hill celebrated her "sheer joy of poetry", while fellow judge Andrew Motion...
Sophie Hannah

Sophie Hannah

b. 1971

Sophie Hannah is a poet and crime fiction writer. Her crime fiction frequently appears on bestseller lists and her poetry is praised by her contemporaries, readers and critics for its comic and off-...
Tony Harrison

Tony Harrison

b. 1937

Tony Harrison is Britain's principal film and theatre poet and has famously said "Poetry is all I write, whether for books, or readings, or for the National Theatre, or for the opera house and...
Adrian Henri

Adrian Henri

b. 1932 d. 2000

Adrian Henri (1932-2000) was a much-loved figure in the world of performance poetry, fine art and beyond. Born in Birkenhead, Henri grew up in Rhyl, Wales, during the war years and trained as a...

Melissa Lee-Houghton

b. 1982

Fearless, naked and knowing, Melissa Lee-Houghton’s poems square up to the wildest reaches of our emotional lives. Hers is a poetry of excess, of the beautiful mess and complex depths of life as it...
Chris McCabe

Chris McCabe

b. 1977

Chris McCabe (b. 1977) is a widely-published poet and Joint Librarian of the Poetry Library in London. His first collection, The Hutton Inquiry, was welcomed by the Guardian as evidence of a poet who...
Roger McGough

Roger McGough

b. 1937

Roger McGough (b. 1937) is one of Britain's best-loved poets. Top-selling The Mersey Sound: Penguin Modern Poets 10 with Liverpool poets Brian Patten and Adrian Henri, hits with Mike McCartney and...
Norman Nicholson

Norman Nicholson

b. 1914 d. 1987

Norman Nicholson (1914-1987) and his poetry are inextricably bound up with the former iron-mining town of Millom, on the edge of the Lake District in Cumbria. Apart from several years spent in a TB...
Adam O'Riordan

Adam O'Riordan

b. 1982

In writing at once intense and wistful, Adam O’Riordan deploys precise imagery and memorable music to poignant effect. His poems, concerned with erasure and the revivifying limits of verse’s charms,...
Brian Patten

Brian Patten

b. 1946

Brian Patten (b. 1946) has written many books of poetry for adults and children, as well as prose and drama for stage and radio. He is the youngest of the Liverpool poets who, in the 1960s, along...
Jacob Polley

Jacob Polley

b. 1975

Measured, musical and understated, Jacob Polley's poems delve deep into the elemental, the eerie and the unstable. Whether conjuring a crow from the Biblical tale of Cain's murder of Abel, his gloves...
Joan Poulson

Joan Poulson

Joan Poulson grew up in south Lancashire. She works as writer, poet and visiting writer in schools. Her poetry includes Celebration (1995, UNICEF), Pictures in My Mind (Hodder, 1999) and Onetree...

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A tour of the Children's Archive with Jean Sprackland

There are so many good poems in the Children's Poetry Archive, it's hard to know where to start! I'd like to share...

Featured Guided Tours


Enjoy new recordings of classic poems from the past read by contemporary poets

A Shropshire Lad XXXI:...

A. E. Housman

read by Alan Brownjohn

Ozymandias

Percy Bysshe Shelley

read by Kit Wright