Photo copyright Peter James Millson 2016.

The Library’s patron, Simon Armitage has been named as the UK’s 21st Poet Laureate succeeding Carol Ann Duffy who has held the post for the last 10 years.

There have been 3 other Yorkshire poet laureates: Laurence Eusden, Alfred Austin and Ted Hughes.

Britain’s highest literary honour has its roots in the 17th century, when Ben Jonson was granted a pension by King James I for his services to the crown. Simon will take home an annual stipend of £5,750, along with the traditional butt of sack: 600-odd bottles of sherry. (Very handy for our annual sherry party!)

Simon Armitage was born and lives in West Yorkshire. He is an award-winning poet, playwright and novelist and writes for radio, television, film and stage. He published his first collection Zoom! in 1989 with several full-length collections in the years since. In 2007 he published his critically acclaimed translation of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. In 2015, he was elected Oxford Professor of Poetry and in 2017 he was appointed Professor of Poetry at the University of Leeds. In 2010 he was appointed CBE. In 2018 he was awarded the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry “for his body of work.”

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