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.

To view the full Peterloo Poets Catalogue
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Standing To

Paperback / Hardback / Ltd HBK

0905291352 / 0905291379

Original Cover Price:

3.00 / 4.50 / 7.50


Poems by U. A. Fanthorpe


U.A. Fanthorpe, who was born in Kent in 1929, was educated at Oxford and for many years taught at Cheltenham before becoming a ‘middle-aged drop-out’. She now works full-time in a Bristol hospital and lives in Gloucestershire. Her first volume, Side Effects (Peterloo, 1978) has sold out in a first edition of 1,000 copies. It was acclaimed by reviewers:

‘. . . a new and original voice in English poetry: clear, distinctive, and remarkably assured . . . Side Effects, beautifully produced and a pleasure to handle, is the most accomplished first book of poems I have come across in several years. Quite simply, it demands to be read.’
Charles Causley / Arts South West

‘. . . a consummate, a mistress of what she’s doing.’
Anthony Thwaite / Critics’ Forum, BBC Radio 3

‘I look forward to more of these scathing or tender poems.’
Alan Brownjohn / Encounter

Standing To includes ‘Rising Damp’, the poem that won U.A. Fanthorpe 3rd Prize in the massive Observer/Arvon/South Bank Show poetry competition in 1980, and many of the poems that she read to an enthusiastic audience at the 1981 Cheltenham Festival of Literature.

‘I feel as if I am in a forward zone or trench. I am a lay person in a professional world, and because of this I’m invisible, not really there. That’s very akin to the common soldier. People react very strangely when they come to hospital. Perhaps the relatives refuse to come in but sit in the car park, or the patient arrives in tears or has a fit. You are exposed to extremes, and you have to be ready in the same sort of way as a soldier. I think they call it “standing to”.’
Ursula Fanthorpe / Gloucestershire and Avon Life



This was the moment when Before
Turned into After, and the future’s
Uninvented timekeepers presented arms.

This was the moment when nothing
Happened. Only dull peace
Sprawled boringly over the earth.

This was the moment when even energetic Romans
Could find nothing better to do
Than counting heads in remote provinces.

And this was the moment
When a few farm workers and three
Members of an obscure Persian sect

Walked haphazard by starlight straight
Into the kingdom of heaven.


Price 3.00 / 4.50 / 7.50 per copy post free
Cover illustration: ‘Caporal Maurice Empereur of the Chasseurs Alpins on Guard in the Little St Bernard’s Pass at Seez, Tarantaize, France’ by Anthony Gross R.A. (Courtesy of the Trustees of The Imperial War Museum).
Publication: DECEMBER 1982 (96 pages laminated paperback / hardback / signed ltd hardback)