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Stories, Poems and Humor
Left Book Author Profile
Fanthorpe, U.A.
Left Book

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Authored by:
Fanthorpe, U.A.

Christmas Envelopes [Poetry]
Joseph [Poetry]
What the Donkey Saw [Poetry]
Wicked Fairy at the Manger, The [Poetry]



Biography

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U. A. Fanthorpe was born in Kent in 1929 and attended St Anne's College, Oxford (1949-53) and the University of London Institute of Education (1953-4), afterwards becoming an assistant English teacher, and later Head of English, at Cheltenham Ladies' College (1962-70). In 1971 she took a diploma in school counselling at University College, Swansea, and later worked as a hospital clerk in Bristol. This latter experience provided the backdrop for her first collection, Side Effects (1978), which records the invisible lives and voices of psychiatric patients, and was followed by six further collections, all published by Peterloo Poets.


U. A. Fanthorpe was Arts Council Writing Fellow at St Martin's College, Lancaster (1983-5), and Northern Arts Literary Fellow at the universities of Newcastle and Durham (1987-8). She became Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1988, and holds honorary doctorates from the University of West England and the University of Gloucestershire. She was awarded Hawthornden Fellowships between 1987 and 1997. In 1989 she became a full-time writer, and often gives readings of her work, mostly in the UK and occasionally abroad. Many of her poems are for two voices, and in her readings the other voice is taken by R. V. Bailey.


The first woman to be nominated for the post of Oxford Professor of Poetry, U. A. Fanthorpe was also shortlisted for the 1996 Forward Poetry Prize (Best Poetry Collection of the Year) for Safe as Houses, and was a leading contender for the post of Poet Laureate in 1999. Consequences (2000), was a Poetry Book Society recommendation, and Christmas Poems (2002), brings together a collection of poems that she has been sending out to friends as Christmas cards since 1974. Her latest collection is Queuing for the Sun (2003), and a Collected Poems is due in spring 2004.


In 2001 U. A. Fanthorpe was made CBE for services to poetry. She was also awarded the 2003 Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry. She lives in Gloucestershire.




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