Matt Windle - Birmingham poet laureate 2016 to 2018
Matt has performed spoken word/slam poetry since 2007. As a poet and professional boxer, Matt delivers workshops, performances and poetry-boxercise to schools, libraries, foster homes, young offenders, residential care homes and various other establishments, whilst fighting at a national level as a super flyweight boxer.
“I am hugely proud of my Brummie heritage and that’s a passion I will spread as Poet Laureate of this great city. I would very much like to break down barriers and stereotypes between the young and old, different cultures and different sexes, and show people that poetry can be for any ‘type’ of person.
“I am a professional boxer currently ranked 6th in Britain. When people discover that I am also a poet, they are surprised that I don’t match the usual ‘type’ of what a poet ‘should’ be and I am often surprised to how many people then open up to me and admit to being a ‘secret’ writer.
“I want to help people see that poetry can be for everybody whether it’s writing prose, performing on stage or simply sending a text or tweet. We have an amazing library to work with and to grab people’s attention and this should be used to our advantage. We all create poetry every day and that should be celebrated!”