Word Up!

The search for Worcestershire's next Young Poet Laureate

Every year, one young person from Worcestershire is given the title Worcestershire's Young Poet Laureate.  In this role, our Young Poet Laureate champions poetry as an art form with the aim of encouraging and inspiring other young people to write and perform poetry.  They are commissioned and paid to write three poems to celebrate special events or occasions in Worcestershire and perform at events in libraries, schools, festivals, and other community events.

What is the prize?

As well as being known as Worcestershire's Young Poet Laureate (what a great thing for future CVs!), the winner's name is engraved on the trophy which they can keep for the year. They will also be paid to write and perform more poems throughout the year.

How we choose our Young Poet Laureate 

Word Up! 

Our exciting Word Up competition runs from National Poetry Day in October to December 31 each year. Young people across the county are invited to put to pen to paper and compete for the coveted title of being Worcestershire’s next Young Poet Laureate.

It is open to young people aged 13 to 19 (or 24 for young people with additional needs) with something to say and who love saying it through poetry. We're not necessarily looking for the next Shakespeare or Kate Tempest but if one is found, they won't be turned away!

Word Up will reopen Autumn 2019. 

Each year we run poetry workshops for young people in schools, public libraries and community spaces led by professional spoken word poets. If your organisation would like to host a session please contact Natalie McVey (nmcvey@worcestershire.gov.uk)   

Our current Young Poet Laureate is Sophie Green 

Worcestershire's Young Poet for 2019 has been announced, following a live performance event at The Hive on Sunday 20 January.

After a close competition, Sophie Green, 18, a psychology student at University of Worcester from Redditch, took the 2019 title with her poems 'There is no filthy to this' and 'Manchester'.

The runners up were Catherine Darwen, aged 19, a University of Worcester student and Cat Jones from St John's, Worcester. 

Read Sophie's Poems

Previous winners

Worcestershire's Young Poet Laureate 2018

Our winner in 2018 was Connor Evans from Wythall.

Read Connor's winning poems

Worcestershire's Young Poet Laureate 2017

Our winner in 2017 was Oakley Flanagan from Hanbury.

Read Oakley's winning poems

How can you find out more

If you have any further questions, please don't hesitate to ask:

Severn Arts;
Elaine Knight:
Telephone: 01905 947300 or 07776 530554
Email: e.knight@severnarts.org.uk

Worcestershire Libraries and Learning
Natalie McVey
Telephone: 01905 843663or 07876 144904
Email: nmcvey@worcestershire.gov.uk