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Our National Poetry Day ambassadors are a crack corps of inspiring poets who take poetry to new and young audiences – in schools, in bookshops, in libraries, in public squares – all year round. Their poems on the 2016 theme of Messages will be published in an essential eBook before NPD: some are here.


  • Michaela Morgan

    Michaela Morgan is a poet and writer. She has a collection of shiny awards and shortlistings including the BBC Blue Peter Book award. Sadly, she has lost her Blue Peter badge. Hundreds of her poems are scattered in anthologies in UK and internationally. Her next big poetic production will be Alice in Poetry (published Macmillan September 2016 edited by Michaela Morgan). This is an anthology of poems featuring her and many of the poetry ambassadors providing poetic response to Alice in Wonderland. She regularly visits schools and runs workshops.

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  • Rachel McCrum

    Rachel McCrum has worked as a poet, performer and promoter in Edinburgh since 2012, arriving via Manchester, Belfast, New Zealand, Oxford and a small seaside town in Northern Ireland. She is Broad of Rally & Broad, winner of the 2012 Callum Mcdonald Award and the 2015 Writer In Residence for CoastWord, Dunbar. She has performed and taught workshops in poetry and performance in Greece, South Africa, Haiti and around the UK. Her second pamphlet Do Not Alight Here Again was published in March 2015 by Stewed Rhubarb Press, and in August 2015, she wrote and performed her first solo show at the Edinburgh Fringe, as part of new spoken word collective SHIFT/. She was the inaugural BBC Scotland Poet In Residence in 2015.

    Follow Rachel on Twitter.

  • Sophie Herxheimer

    Sophie Herxheimer is a London born artist and poet. She trained in painting at Camberwell and Chelsea. She’s held residencies for LIFT, Southbank Centre and Transport for London. Exhibitions include The Whitworth, The Poetry Library and The National Portrait Gallery. She has illustrated five fairy tale collections, made several artists books, created a 300 metre tablecloth to run the length of Southwark Bridge, featuring hand printed food stories from a thousand Londoners; narrated an episode of The Food Programme from Margate, made a life size concrete poem in the shape of Mrs Beeton sited next to her grave; and a pie big enough for seven drama students to jump out of singing, on the lawn of an old peoples’ home. Recent publications include The Listening Forest and The New Concrete. Sophie teaches and collaborates extensively.

    Follow Sophie on Twitter.

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  • Joshua Seigal

    Joshua Seigal is an award-winning poet, performer and educator who uses poetry to develop literacy skills and inspire confidence and creativity in communication. He has worked in hundreds of schools, nurseries, libraries, theatres and festivals around the country, and has poems published in numerous anthologies. Joshua’s new book I Don’t Like Poetry is out soon with Bloomsbury. His most recent book is My Grandpa’s Beard, illustrated by Chris White.

    Follow Joshua on Twitter.

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  • Matt Goodfellow

    Matt is a poet and primary school teacher from Manchester. His poems have been published in magazines and anthologies worldwide. Matt’s high-energy performances and workshops have delighted, excited and enthused thousands of children (and adults!) in schools, libraries and bookshops across the UK. You can book Matt for your school by contacting at

    His most recent publication is Carry Me Away.

    Follow Matt on Twitter.

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  • Deborah Alma

    Deborah is an experienced workshop facilitator and has delivered a range of poetry and creative writing workshops. She works using poetry to help communicate with people with dementia, both for The Courtyard Theatre in Hereford and for Ledbury Poetry Festival. She has been lead writer for Writing West Midlands Writing Squads in Shrewsbury & Ludlow, teaching creative writing to young people. Deborah also wrote and taught the Writing Poetry module at The University of Worcester. She was writer in residence for the NHS conference in 2013 on Mental Health and Wellbeing, was and Poet in Residence at The Hurst, for the Arvon Foundation in 2014.

    Deborah also offers consultations as the Emergency Poet and prescribes poems as cures, offering a mix of the serious, the therapeutic and the theatrical. From their poetry ambulance, Deborah and her assistant Nurse Verse dispense ‘poemcetamols’ and other poetic pills and treatments from the Cold Comfort Pharmacy.

    Follow The Emergency Poet on Facebook and Twitter.

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  • Indigo Williams

    After bursting on to the poetry scene in 2010, Indigo established herself as a poet who commands the stage with gripping presence and powerful poetry. With both substance and passion, her work is emotive and thought provoking. She is the winner of the 2012 New Generation slam and has facilitated workshops across Europe, Bangladesh and Nigeria.

    Indigo is one of 6 leading poets working full-time in a secondary school as part of the pioneering Spoken Word Educators programme in conjunction with Goldsmiths University. She is passionate about using the power of poetry to engage and transform the lives of young people.

    Her work has appeared on BBC Radio 4’s Bespoken Word, Tedx Brixton, Glastonbury Festival, Cheltenham Literature Festival and many more. Her poem ‘The Organist’ was commissioned by the Royal Festival Hall and is featured on the BBC Radio 3 page in celebration of the newly restored Royal Festival Hall organ.

    Follow Indigo on Twitter.

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  • Sally Crabtree

    Sally Crabtree is an international performance poet/artist, children’s author and the Poetry Postie. She has been delighting audiences with her deliveries at venues around the country – from small village fetes to large music festivals such as Womad. She has just returned from a visit to China after being awarded an Arts Council grant to create an exciting International project called ‘Communities Communicating’.

    Follow the Poetry Postie on Twitter.

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  • Joseph Coelho

    Joseph Coelho is a performance poet and playwright. He has written plays for companies including: Soho Theatre, Polka Theatre, Theatre Royal York, Oily Cart, The Spark Children’s Festival, Islington Community Theatre, Pied Piper Theatre Company and Pinhole Theatre Company. His plays have received special note from Soho’s Verity Bargate Award and The Bruntwood Playwriting Competition.

    Joseph is writer, performer and co-founder for Word Pepper Theatre Company with author/illustrator/paper-engineer John O’leary. Word Pepper’s debut show The PoetryJoe Show has toured widely up and down the country over the last two years, and was this year joined by their second show Pop-up Flashback in association with Half Moon Theatre and Apples and Snakes.

    Joseph’s poems have been published in several Macmillan anthologies including Green Glass Beads (ed. by Jacqueline Wilson). His debut children’s collection Werewolf Club Rules is published by Frances Lincoln and was shortlisted for The CLPE Poetry Award in 2015. Joseph has been a guest poet on Cbeebies Rhyme Rocket where he was beamed up from The Rhyme Rock to perform his Bug Poem.

    Follow Joe on Twitter.

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  • Rachel Rooney

    Rachel Rooney is a teacher and poet who has two collections of children’s poetry published by Frances Lincoln. The first, The Language of Cat, won the 2012 CLPE Award ( CLiPPA) and the second My Life as a Goldfish was shortlisted for the 2015 CLiPPA. She also has a rhyming picture book A Patch of Black – a tale about nighttime fears published by Macmillan Children’s Books. She goes into schools as a visiting poet, and has performed at Hay Literary Festival, Southbank Centre and for The Children’s Bookshow.

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  • Jan Dean

    Jan Dean writes poems.  Writing poems is wonderfully strange – like playing lucky dip with a barrel full of tigers, raspberry jellies and machine parts. She visits schools where she performs her poetry and then invites the students into her head to play at poem-making. Jan’s head is full of weird stuff. Her latest book – written with Roger Stevens – is ‘The Penguin In Lost Property’ , so Jan is currently taking the Lost Property Office into schools looking for the owners of the ocean, two odd eyeballs and an antler (While the penguin escapes to have a poetry adventure).

    Follow Jan on Twitter.

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  • Liz Brownlee

    Liz lives in a village in the south west of England with her husband Peter, cat Milla and dog Lola (Liz’s assistance dog – trained by Medical Detections Dogs). Her most recent publication is Animal Magic. Liz is a poet, children’s poet and film-maker. She has worked extensively with National Poetry Day and her series of film poems for NPD 2015 are available on her YouTube channel.

    If you would like to book Liz, she will come to your school, library, literary festival or poetry event and show images of endangered animals, talk about them, read poetry and do workshops with all ages. You can find out more about Liz and her work on her website.

    Follow Liz on Twitter.

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  • Roger Stevens

    Roger Stevens founded and runs the award-winning Poetry Zone website, which encourages children to write and publish their poetry and offers guidance and ideas for teachers on now to make the teaching of poetry fun and rewarding. Since 1998 The Poetry Zone has published around 20,000 poems by young people and had millions of visitors – children and teenagers, real live poets and teachers who use the Poetry Zone as a fun way of teaching poetry in their schools.

    Roger has written 24 book and has poems in over 200 children’s anthologies. He loves to edit anthologies for children too: recent ones include A Million Brilliant Poems (part one) (A&C Black) for which he’s been lucky to be able to choose some of his very favourite poems from some of his favourite poets; What Rhymes With Sneeze (A&C Black) – an anthology of rhyming poems and Off By Heart (A&C Black) – poems to memorise, with helpful memorising tips in the back. With Macmillan Children’s Books, he’s published What Are We Fighting For – war poems with Brian Moses and a book of animal poems written with Jan Dean.

    He lives in Brighton and France and is frequently invited to visit schools to talk about poetry: if you want him to come to your school, get in touch with him via Authors Abroad.

    Follow Roger on Facebook and Twitter.

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  • Paul Cookson

    Paul Cookson has spent twenty five years visiting schools, libraries and literature festivals, performing poems, leading workshops, publishing books and making people laugh – and he still isn’t tired. The Works is his best selling anthology (over 200,000 and counting) and his latest collection of his own favourite poems is Paul Cookson’s Joke Shop. He is the Official Poet in Residence for the National Football Museum in Manchester, Poet Laureate for Slade and has travelled the world to share his work. In 2009 he received a National Reading Hero award.

    A man of many double acts, he is currently working with ex-popstar and ex-Housemartin Stan Cullimore and they travel round to schools with their ukuleles singing silly songs and poems and generally having fun.

    He lives in Retford with his wife, two children, a springer spaniel called Max.

    Follow Paul on Twitter.

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  • Brian Moses

    Brian Moses lives in the small Sussex village of Burwash with his wife Anne, and a loopy labrador called Honey. He has been a professional children’s poet since 1988. To date he has over 200 books published including volumes of his own poetry such as A Cat Called Elvis (Macmillan) and Behind the Staffroom Door (Macmillan), anthologies such as The Secret Lives of Teachers (Macmillan) and Aliens Stole My Underpants (Macmillan) and picture books such as Beetle in the Bathroom (Puffin) and Trouble at the Dinosaur Cafe (Puffin). Over 1 million copies of Brian’s poetry books have now been sold by Macmillan. He is also founder & co-director of a national scheme for young writers administered by his booking agency Authors Abroad. Brian’s most recent books are; Spooky Poems (co-written with James Carter), a picture book The Frog Olympics and his childhood memoir Keeping Clear of Paradise Street, all published in 2015.

    Brian also runs writing workshops and performs his own poetry and percussion shows. To date he has given over 3000 performances in schools, libraries, theatres and at festivals throughout the UK and abroad. Find out more about Brian’s work in schools.

    Follow Brian on Twitter.

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