Irish Times Award/Thomas Hardy Celebration – Poetry News Roundup April 1st

We begin the week here on My Poetic Side with a look at the winner of this years Irish Times Poetry Now Award. We also have the celebrations that are being planned to mark the 179th birth anniversary of Thomas Hardy.

2019 Winner of the Irish Times Poetry Now Award

The poet Derek Mahon, who is Irish born has been named as the winner of this years Irish Times Poetry Now Award. This is the 3rd time that Mahon has won the award. He won in 2008 with “Life on Earth” and in 2005 with


His winning work was


which the judges described as a masterpiece which was full of style and with on


 Mahon, who currently resides in Kinsale was one of six poets who were shortlisted for the award. The judges said


Mahon was awarded with the €2,000 prize on Saturday in an event that took place at DLR Lexicon which is located in Dun Laoghaire.

The Irish Times Poetry Now Award has been running for the past fourteen years. Previous winners have included names such as  Seamus Heaney, Dorothy Molloy, Paddy Bushe, Sinead Morrissey, and 2018’s winner Leontia Flynn.

Dorset Businesses and the Plan to Celebrate Thomas Hardy

This year will mark the 179th anniversary of the birth of the author and poet Thomas Hardy, and local businesses in Dorset as being asked to help sponsor the events that will be taking place.

A variety of different events have been planned to commemorate the occasion including the Hardy Victorian Festival which will take place on 22nd June in Dorchester.

It is expected that the event will attract many visitors, both locals and those from further afield, to the town during the celebrations. The Chamber of Business is hoping to enlist local businesses to help sponsor the event. They will be given the opportunity to take part and also sponsor some of the events that will take place

The annual laying of a wreath at the Thomas Hardy statue which is located at Top o’ Town will also take place. This ceremony is carried out by the Thomas Hardy Society and takes place with the aim of increasing people’s knowledge of Hardy as well as promoting Dorchester as a tourist destination of come interest.

The provisional programme for the day includes plenty of poetry and plays by Hardy, there will also be heritage tours, live music, a Victorian street market and Victorian tales, a steam engine and plenty of different stalls including food and drink stalls. There will also be a dressing up contest for those who might be interested and a 100ft Maypole. During the main events, High East Street and High West Street will be closed off to traffic to ensure the safety of those people attending the celebrations.

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