Professor of Poetry Simon Armitage named next Poet Laureate

Simon Armitage, the current Oxford Professor of Poetry, has been named the next UK Poet Laureate.

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Simon Armitage reading to children.

Simon Armitage, the current Oxford Professor of Poetry, has been named the next UK Poet Laureate.

Succeeding the incumbent Carol Ann Duffy, the poet’s tenure as Laureate will last ten years.

His final lecture in his current position will take place on Wednesday of 3rd Week, entitled “When I heard the Learn’d Astronomer”.

The decision to award the post, made by the Queen on advice from the government, comes days after Imtiaz Dharker publicly declined the position amongst unconfirmed rumours of her impending appointment.

In line with the theme of his latest collection The Unaccompanied, Armitage has said he wishes to create some form of climate change themed initiative and to set up a National Centre for Poetry.

Described by the Culture Secretary as having a “witty and profound take on modern life…known and respected across the world”,  Armitage has published 28 collections of poetry, received a CBE and won the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry 2018.

Carol Ann Duffy remarked at his appointment that Armitage has “touched the matter of our lives with characters and subject matter that lived among us: teachers and council tenants, chip shops and television shows, figures who drank in the local pub and shopped in the nearby supermarket”.

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