I entered five poems for the 2023 competitions, of which two, Asteroid and Anonymous, were placed first and second for the Pomfret Cup, and three, Elegy For a Hermit, Lockdown Safety Glass and Torbreck were placed first, second and third for the Batty Cup. I usually write poetry and my preferred typeface is Calibri. I like to enter poetry competitions to test my competence which I think (and hope) is still developing after 30 years of writing. My urge to concentrate on poetry rather than prose was very much influenced when I won a nationwide competition in 2003 to write a poem on the theme of 'Discovery' associated with the renaming of the Swan Hellenic Ship 'Minerva'. The competition was adjudicated by the then Poet Laureate Andrew Motion and my wife and I were invited to attend the re-naming ceremony in the Pool of London where my winning poem was read by Dame Judi Dench. I joined the LAA in 2016 having previously been unaware of its existence, even though I was born a true Lancastrian in Wigan 86 years ago.
My current writing project is to publish a fourth collection of poems. I've already written about ninety, but I know that some need to be revised. There's no going back once your words have appeared in print.
The photo was taken on the summit of Suilven, a Scottish mountain. which I climbed at the age of 83, and the book, A Distillation of Hills was published last year by Chapeltown Books. Although fundamentally an autobiography based on some of my selected walks and climbs, it also contains some of my poetry.