London’s Poetry Trail Promotes Poetry to Children

July 21, 2014

Children are finding (or hunting) snippets of poetry purposefully stashed around Granary Square in King’s Cross, an area of Central London known for its Eurostar rail service at St. Pancras International, by the Centre for Literacy in Primary Education (CLPE). The Poetry Trail celebrates the recently awarded CLPE Poetry Award, and includes twelve poems written by children’s poets either shortlisted for or judging the 2014 Award, including Julia Donaldson, Grace Nichols, Joanne Limburg, George Szirtes, Roger McGough, Kathy Henderson, and the 2014 winner, Tony Mitton.

The CLPE Poetry Award for a book of children’s poetry was launched in 2003, and is the only award for published poetry for children in the UK, according to CLPE’s website. Of the trail, chair of the judges Roger McGough said to The Guardian, “We don’t want children to be frightened of poetry, we want them to be given it as an everyday part of their lives, and having the poetry trail in such a prominent place and the poems displayed so beautifully gives a high profile to this really important aspect of children’s literature.”

The trail begins at the King’s Cross Visitor Centre, where poetry explorers may acquire instructions and a map. These are also available for download at CLPE’s website and on its GIS app.

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