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Sixth formers have chance to literally 'take away' a poem

Sixth formers visiting the University of Roehampton for their Offer Day on 18 February will have the chance to pick up a personalised poem during their visit, thanks to the Poetry Takeaway – an innovative project encouraging young people to get to grips with verse.

Posted: 17 February 2015

image for news story Sixth formers have chance to literally 'take away' a poem
The Poetry Takeaway van, which will be on the University campus serving up free poems on demand

The Poetry Takeaway is the world’s first travelling poetry emporium and will be at the University’s campus all day on the 18th. Visitors can ask its established ‘takeaway chefs’ for a poem on any subject and a piece will be written there and then and served up to them.

Current English and Creative Writing students will also have the chance to work with the Poetry Takeaway team, learning about their work and process. There will be the chance to ask questions about their experience on working as established performance poets. Some students will also have the opportunity to work as ‘poet chefs’ in the van writing bespoke poetry for guests. English and Creative Writing students can register for the workshop here.

Professor Laura Peters, Head of the Department of English and Creative Writing, said: “This is a really unusual way for hundreds of visiting school pupils to remember their day on campus with us and to see poetry being created before their eyes.

“The face of poetry has changed over the years from Wordsworth to war poetry to urban verse. At Roehampton we teach all of it and so we want our future students to have an understanding of how a single thought can generate a piece in any style on any topic. It’s a really exciting way to see creative writing in action.”

Two poets will be based in the Poetry Takeaway van, and promise to create an interesting or entertaining poem on any topic, whether it is related to the University visit or a completely unrelated subject. All poems are completely free. The writers are:

  • Laurie Bolger, who has performed at Camden Roundhouse and the Royal Albert Hall and has been Poet in Residence at the Olympic Park.
  • Alex Gwyther, who has written poetry for BBC Radio 1 and 2, and has performed at the Royal Festival Hall and Latitude Festival. Alex graduated with a degree in Creative Writing from the University of Roehampton in 2008.

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