Yorkshire poet Simon Armitage chosen by the BBC to write a poem as part of its 100 year celebrations

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The theme is 100 years of the BBC and each poem will look at the relationship between the broadcaster and the nation; Simon’s poem Transmission Report will focus on the BBC from a unique perspective, while Courtney’s poem The Invitation will look at the next century of public service broadcasting.

Both poems will air during the BBC’s Special Centenary Programming Week, October 22-29, with further details to be released soon.

Poet Laureate Simon Armitage in rehearsal at the Elsecar Heritage Centre, Barnsley. (Photo credit: Simon Hulme)

BBC 100 editor James Stirling said: “I am delighted that we are honoring the BBC’s 100-year commitment to connecting viewers and listeners to music and poetry with two of today’s finest poets. from the United Kingdom.

“The poems will be a wonderful addition to our special centennial week of programming.”

Simon is the British Poet Laureate of Poetry at the University of Leeds and a former Professor of Poetry at the University of Oxford.

He is also a renowned broadcaster, playwright, memoirist and lyricist; his latest collection of poems, Magnetic Field, has attracted wide attention. He presents BBC Radio 4’s The Poet Laureate Has Gone To His Shed series, and his most recent poem was Floral Tribute, written in tribute to Queen Elizabeth II after her death on September 8, 2022.

Courtney Stoddart is a well-known poet and performer, who was born and raised in Edinburgh. She began performing in April 2019 and has since had a meteoric rise, performing on national and international stages for the past two years.

In June 2019, Courtney took part in BBC Radio 1xtra’s and the BBC contains Strong Language Festival’s first global talent program, qualifying for final 12. She was also selected to be published in an anthology by Own It! London and edited by Jude Yawson, co-author of Stormzy’s Rise Up: The Story So Far.


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