Literature Wales name Alex Wharton as the new Children’s Laureate for Wales 2023-25 at a special event at the Hay Festival on Friday.
The announcement took place on Friday 2 June, during a special event on The Hive stage at the Hay Festival, led by current Children’s Laureate Wales, Connor Allen. Poet and playwright Nia Morais was named the next Bardd Plant Cymru (Welsh-language poet laureate of Wales) for 2023-25 the previous day (Thursday 1 June) at the Urdd Eisteddfod in Llandovery. Both poets will start in their two-year roles in September.
Following an open call out in January, Literature Wales was delighted to receive an astonishing number of high-quality applications for the role this year, resulting in a highly competitive process that included trial workshops and interviews.
Alex Wharton is an award-winning writer and performer of poetry for adults and children. His First Book of poetry for children, Daydreams and Jellybeans, was shortlisted for the Wales Book of The Year Award 2022, The North Somerset Teacher’s Book Awards, The Laugh Out Loud Book Awards and was named as a National Poetry Day Recommended Read. Alex won the Rising Stars Wales Award in 2020, held by Literature Wales and Firefly Press. He has collaborated with key national organisations such as Cadw, National Dance Company Wales, Welsh Government, British Council of Literature and Welsh Libraries, and has also appeared in festivals such as Hay Festival and Edinburgh International Book Festival. Alex’s second and third collections of poetry Poems for Brilliant Brains and Red Sky at Night: A Poet’s Delight will be published with Firefly Press in 2023 and 2024.