Our feedback has shown that having a real live poet in the classroom, library or poetry lunchtime club inspires pupils to stretch their imaginations and explore their creativity.
The following poets deliver workshops in poetry camps, schools and festivals across the UK and Ireland on behalf of the Betjeman Poetry Prize.
Kate Clanchy is a writer and a teacher. She has published three award-winning poetry collections, and has a Selected Poems from Picador. She has been Writer in Residence at Oxford Spires Academy since 2009, and with her students has created a radio documentary, 'We Are Writing a Poem about Home', and the anthology 'England, Poems from a School'. You can follow her students' work on twitter. @KateClanchy1
Ian McMillan is a writer and broadcaster who presents The Verb on BBC Radio 3 on Friday nights. He's written poems, plays, a verse autobiography Talking Myself Home and a voyage round Yorkshire in Neither Nowt Nor Summat. He watches Darfield and Yorkshire Cricket Clubs and the only time he played cricket, at Low Valley Juniors in 1963, Mrs Hudson told him to take his balaclava off or she'd make him wear his mother's Rainmate. Ian’s latest collection To Fold The Evening Star - New and Selected Poems (Carcanet) was published last year. He was recently awarded The Freedom of Barnsley. Cats make him sneeze. @IMcMillan
Joshua Seigal is a London-based poet, performer and educator. He has poetry books published by Bloomsbury, and has performed all over the world, including in Belgium, the UAE, and the Edinburgh Book Festival. He has held residencies at numerous schools, and in 2016 he was an official National Poetry Day Ambassador and was shortlisted for a National Literacy Trust Award. Joshua works with children of all ages and abilities, as well as running training days for teachers and doing comedy and spoken word performances for grown ups. www.joshuaseigal.co.uk
Over the last few years, Rachel Rooney's work has been published in over sixty anthologies. Her collection The Language of Cat was long-listed for the Carnegie Medal and won the 2012 CLiPPA (CLPE) Award. Her collection My Life As A Goldfish was shortlisted for the same award in 2015. www.rachelrooneypoet.com
John Lyons, Trinidad-born Prize-winning poet and recognised painter, has worked as a creative practitioner in Britain for many years. He was twice winner of the Peterloo Asian and Afro-Caribbean Poetry Prize and has been commended in The National Poetry Competition. He has six poetry collections published, the most recent being a collection of poems for children, Dancing in The Rain, which was short-listed for the CliPPA Award. His enthusiastic commitment to education as a creative writing tutor is well-established, as is evidenced by his one hundred and forty-six creative writing workshops and residences, including the Arvon Foundation on ten separate occasions.
Paul Lyalls' work is funny, fast-moving, hip, accessible, clever and real. He has run hundreds of workshops in secondary and primary schools, and gigged as a performance poet and spoken word artist in many prestigious venues, from New York to Belfast. In 2011, Paul wrote The everyday Olympians, the official Olympic poem for London Borough of Haringey and in 2012, he was an official Olympic 'Shake the Dust Poet' as well as starring in the BBC’s television programme Let’s Write Poetry: The Big Slam. Paul's new children's collection, A funny Thing Happened' is published by Pepper Books and includes an intro by Michael Rosen.
Indigo Williams is a British Nigerian poet, writer and spoken word educator from Brixton. Through poetry, Indigo encourages mindfulness, emotional intelligence and confidence in a secondary school in London. Under her tutorage, students have won youth national poetry competitions, had their work featured on the TEDx UCL website, and have been selected as recommended poets for the Foyle Young Poets Award. Indigo has performed at Tedx Brixton, Tedx UCL, Glastonbury, BBC Radio 4 Bespoken Word and across the UK and Europe.
Harry Man was Poet in Residence at StAnza Poetry Festival in St. Andrews, Scotland 2016. His pamphlet, Lift was published by Tall Lighthouse in 2013. In 2014 he won the UNESCO Bridges of Struga Award. He is a 2016 Hawthornden Fellow and his next pamphlet is called Finders Keepers and is published by Sidekick Books.
A.F. Harrold is an English poet who writes and performs for both children and adults. He’s also the author of some novels for children, including the Fizzlebert Stump series and The Imaginary (illustrated by Emily Gravett). He is the owner of many books, a handful of hats and one beard. He spends his spare time showing off on stage, in schools and at home, and his non-spare time sitting around stroking the aforementioned beard, having baths and writing things down. He lives in Reading with a stand-up comedian and two cats.