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The National Poet of Wales is a cultural ambassador role which honours some of the most innovative and highly regarded writers. The National Poet represents the best writing from Wales on the national and international stage, leading campaigns within Wales and appearing at events and festivals worldwide to raise the profile of writing and writers from Wales.

The current National Poet of Wales is Ifor ap Glyn. During his period in this role, Ifor has taken to stages across the globe, performing his work in festivals and events from Poland to China, Berlin to Belfast and from Caernarfon to Cameroon.

He has been commissioned to write poems and prose to mark a number of occasions over the past few years, including: 50 years since the Aberfan tragedy; the UNESCO Year of Indigenous Languages 2019; 20 years of devolution in Wales; social appeals, birthdays and the highlights of Welsh football.

Ifor has contributed widely to a variety of projects in Wales and beyond, advocating for the power of literature to change lives. These include Cofi Armi, Reading Friends, Holy Glimmers of Goodbye, Hen Wlad fy Nhadau and Cofio’r Cau.

About Ifor ap Glyn:

Born and bred in London to Welsh parents Ifor ap Glyn is a multi-award-winning poet, presenter, director and producer. Ifor has won the Crown at the National Eisteddfod – one of the festival’s most prestigious prizes – on two occasions, first in 1999 and most recently at the Denbighshire and District National Eisteddfod in 2013. From 2008-2009 Ifor was Bardd Plant Cymru, the Welsh-language Children’s Laureate.

He lives in Caernarfon and works at Cwmni Da, an independent television and film production company of which he was a founding member. He has won several BAFTA Cymru awards for his work including the Lleisiau’r Rhyfel Mawr and Popeth yn Gymraeg series.

 

“It has been a privilege to respond a wide variety of events in the national calendar over the past three years ranging from the joyous to the poignant, and hoping to reach new audiences in Wales and beyond. I look forward to the next three years and to the challenge of further developing partnerships and promoting the two literatures of our country the best I can!”

– National Poet of Wales, Ifor ap Glyn

 

“We are a country where words and lyricism go hand-in-hand and the role of National Poet of Wales is testament to the importance we place on language. Whether on the page or the stage, Ifor ap Glyn’s role has been to thrill and inspire us but also to respond to and reflect the world around us, helping us to make sense of it.”

First Minister of Wales, Mark Drakeford

 

Established in 2005, the first National Poet of Wales was Gwyneth Lewis who was followed by Gwyn Thomas in 2006. The post reached new heights under Gillian Clarke, who held the position from 2008 to 2016. During her time as National Poet Gillian Clarke performed to tens of thousands of people around the world, and has gained many notable commissions and residencies. Ifor ap Glyn was appointed in 2015. 

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