Simon Armitage
Simon Armitage

Paul Wolfgang Webster

Simon Armitage elected as next Professor of Poetry

Simon Armitage has been elected as the next Professor of Poetry at Oxford University.

The result was announced at Oxford University’s Convocation House at 4pm on Friday 19 June.

Mr Armitage received 1,221 votes, followed by Wole Soyinka on 920 and AE Stallings on 918. Sean Haldane received 221 votes and Ian Gregson received 75. All candidates received at least 50 nominations by members of Convocation.

4,030 people registered to vote in this election and 3,340 voted. This is an increase from 3,311 and 2,522 respectively in the 2010 election.

Seamus Perry, Professor of English Literature at Oxford University, said: 'We are delighted with Convocation’s choice of Simon Armitage as the next Professor of Poetry at Oxford University. Mr Armitage is a distinguished poet and we expect a full house at his inaugural lecture next term.'

'We would like to thank Geoffrey Hill for his fascinating and entertaining lectures during his five years in the post. He will be a hard act to follow.'

The Professor of Poetry is appointed every four years and the responsibilities of the post include giving a public lecture each term and the Creweian Oration at the University's honorary degree ceremony every other year.

Previous holders of the post include John Keble, Matthew Arnold, W.H. Auden, Robert Graves, Seamus Heaney, Paul Muldoon, and Christopher Ricks. Arnold was the first incumbent to deliver his lectures in English rather than Latin.