Lynn Poetry Festival has a world-wide appeal

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A distinguished list of guest poets has been lined up for the 31st annual King’s Lynn Poetry Festival.

It will take place at Lynn Town Hall, opening on Friday, September 25 (7.30pm) and continuing that weekend, Saturday and Sunday 26-27.

Among the distinguished poets appearing will be Les Murray, Australia’s leading poet and one of the greatest contemporary poets writing in English.

He has now published 30 volumes of poetry, winning many literary awards, including the prestigious TS Eliot Award (1996) and the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry (1999).

Also taking part will be:

Elaine Feinstein who became a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1981 and a member of its Council in 2007. During her long writing career she has published some 20 books of poetry, 15 novels, five biographies, short stories and plays for radio and television; her poetry collections Talking to the Dead (2007) and Cities (2010) are both published by Carcanet and her latest collection Portraits was published in 2015.

Making another welcome visit to King’s Lynn is John Fuller, poet, novelist, critic and Emeritus Fellow at Magdalen College, Oxford. His Collected Poems were published in 1996 by Chatto & Windus. Stones and Fires won the Forward Prize for poetry in 1996 and his most recent of 20 poetry books are Pebble & I (Chatto & Windus, 2010) and The Dice Cup (Chatto & Windus, 2014).

Kevin Crossley-Holland, a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, is a widely known poet, librettist and children’s author living on the North Norfolk coast. During the first decade of this century he published the Arthur trilogy whose first book The Seeing Stone won three awards and his 1985 novella Storm won the annual Carnegie Medal. He has written eight collections of poetry, and the latest new and selected works entitled The Mountains of Norfolk (Enitharmon, 2011) won the EDP/Jarrolds poetry prize 2012. His latest book, published in June, is The Breaking Hour.

Following publication last year of his latest volume Ode to Didcot Power Station (Bloodaxe) Kit Wright returns to present another selection from his work which can be, as the poet Antony Wilson has said, “funny, serious and moving, and sometimes all three in the space of a single poem”. He is the author of more than 25 books for both adults and children, several of which have won national awards.

American poet Jennifer Militello published her first full collection Flinch of Song in 2009 and her second Body Thesaurus in 2013. She currently teaches at New England College, New Hampshire. Of her second book, a reviewer said “Her poems stun and stupefy, goad and galvanize, illuminate and mystify”.

Tim Liardet has published nine poetry collections, several becoming Poetry Society recommendations. His fifth collection won an Arts Council England Writer’s Award in 2006 and was shortlisted for the TS Eliot prize; his book The World Before Snow was published earlier this year. He is Professor of Poetry at Bath Spa University.

Martha Kapos, born in America, studied and taught at Chelsea College of Art. In 2000 she was shortlisted for Poetry Review’s Geoffrey Dearmer New Poet of the Year Award and her first collection, My Nights in Cupid’s Palace (Enitharmon, 2003) won the Jerwood Aldeburgh Prize for Best First Collection; her second volume, Supreme Being (Enitharmon 2008), received a Poetry Book Society Recommendation and her latest collection is The Likeness (Enitharmon 2014).

Anthony Thwaite is an English poet and writer who was awarded the OBE in 1992 for his services to poetry. In addition to his 15 published works he has been a publisher and editor including the BBC and The New Statesman; as well as the major editor of Philip Larkin’s works. Anthony’s collected poems were published in 2007 (Enitharmon Press). His latest collection Going Out is a “journey of tremendous stylistic and geographic breadth” (educationumbrella).

In addition Arc Publications of Todmorden are expected to provide two poets from their lists. At this stage the programme is liable to alteration and/or addition.

Full details of the Festival events and times are available online at, or for more details you can e-mail founder Tony Ellis at

Tickets for all events are £8.50, and are available in advance or on the door (although you’re highly recommended to book your tickets) and a weekend pass for the whole Festival is available for £37.50.