City of Wolverhampton’s first ever Poet Laureate has been announced - and will play a starring role in the fourth Wolverhampton Literature Festival early next year.

Emma Purshouse will act as a champion of poetry for the city, raising its profile and working on events during the festival and throughout the year. 

Emma is a freelance writer, performance poet, and comedienne who hails from Wolverhampton.

She performs her work nationally, is a published author - writing both for adults and children - and a poetry slam champion. She has a degree in English, and an MA in creative writing, enjoys writing flash fiction and has won and been shortlisted for both local and national competitions. Emma is also an experienced workshop facilitator.

Councillor Harman Banger, City of Wolverhampton Council Cabinet Member for City Economy, said: “It is fantastic to see the Wolverhampton Literature Festival going from strength to strength and Emma will be a fantastic addition to the festival in promoting poetry across the city.”

Emma, City of Wolverhampton Poet Laureate, added: “I am absolutely over the moon to have been chosen to represent my home city in the honorary role of Wolverhampton Poet Laureate.  

“I love this place, and indeed the wider Black Country region. Our landscapes, stories, history, humour and people have always featured in my work and I'm keen to continue to use poetry to promote the often overlooked beauty that is to be found here, and to remind people about the good things that Wolverhampton has to offer.”

In association with Write Out Loud, Wolverhampton Literature Festival is running the WoLF Poetry Competition 2020, which is open to poets across the globe.

The theme for this year's competition is 'vision'. Poets are invited to submit poems looking at this theme in whatever way inspires them.

For more information visit WoLF Poetry Competition 2020.

The fourth Wolverhampton Literature Festival will take place from Friday 31 January to Sunday 2 February 2020.