Peterloo Poets

Poetry Publishers 1972 - 2009

We are sorry to announce the death of John Whitworth 11.12.1945 to 20.04.19
Many of you will know John was a well loved and respected member of the Peterloo Poets “family” in its day and was a staunch Peterloo Poets supporter over the years.

The funeral will take place at Barham Crematorium Chapel at 12:40pm on Wednesday 22nd May
Barham Crematorium (CT4 6QU) is 9.6 miles (a 20 minute drive) from Canterbury, using the A2 to Dover.
No flowers, please, but any donations would be appreciated, in John’s name, to: Pilgrim’s Hospice, 56 London Road, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 8JA or online at www.pilgrimshospices.org

 Following his editorship of the poetry magazine Phoenix (1958 - 1975), Harry Chambers founded Peterloo Poets in Manchester in 1972.
Peterloo’s first two full collections published in 1976 were Elma Mitchell’s The Poor Man in the Flesh and Edmond Leo Wright’s The Horwich Hennets. Peterloo Poets went on to publish 240 volumes of poetry.

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Original Cover Price:



Poems by I. P. Taylor


From reviews of The Hollow Places (Peterloo Poets, 1980):

I. P. Taylor’s vision of agricultural man shares with Hughes and Heaney a noble poetic ancestry running from Wordsworth to Hardy to Lawrence, but his poetry is all his own because he has lived through his subjects in mud, words and imagination . . . The Hollow Places is, as one expected, a first-class collection which confirms him as one of the best poets we have.’
                         Cal Clothier, Yorkshire Arts Association newspaper

’In his excellent “Where Beasts Most Graze” Taylor memorializes a displaced Wharram Percy tenant, cottar and shepherd during the Enclosures themselves around 1500 (the shepherd too is a victim, albeit one on the winning side), and then evokes the deserted township in 1975 . . . The human cost of vast and successive economic change is re-created with a moving, spare impersonality of tone . . . Taylor’s is an inventive, controlled, authoratitive voice, unafraid of the rare but exact word . . . contemplative, intelligently and movingly eloquent on behalf of those silent people and places for which he invents voices. The “peasants’ care” and the “poet’s rapture” whose unacknowledged antagonism angered the poet Crabbe during another phase of Enclosure, often marry here in successful elegy.’
                             Peter J. Conradi, Times Literary Supplement


Grandad Taylor’s Bedtime Story

The death of a valley is very simple -
is when you stop feeling
its transforming holiness.

After that drained wetlands,
real-estate -
the deserts of the dispossessed.

The death of moorland, too, is simple -
is when you stop seeing
its riveting miracle.

After that Cheviots,
radar-bowls -
the ecology of loss.

The death of a relationship is also simple -
is when you stop seeing
the one you were one with
when you stop feeling
her transforming holiness.

After that anything:
babies -
the heart’s drip-feed of hope.

The death of love is simple -
the forest you ripened under
for the ghost of yesterday’s flame.

The passing overhead of homeless wings.


Price 7.95 per copy post free (5.30 post free to Associate Members)
Cover illustration: Tarot Card: Death, wearing a cardinal’s hat and mantellata. Attributed to Antonio di Cicognara, Italy, late 15th century. By courtesy of Victoria & Albert Museum.
Publication: OCTOBER 1984 (66 pages laminated paperback)