Isle of Man News - POSTED Tue 16-05-2017

An exciting cultural initiative for the Island

by LC

An exciting cultural initiative for the Island - picture

The Island’s most worthy poet will once again be chosen to be the next Manx Bard, kindly supported by Isle of Man Arts Council, Manx Litfest, Culture Vannin, and Shoprite.

Anyone aged 18+ who lives on the island is eligible to enter the competition to become the 4th Manx Bard, working to promote poetry and highlight Manx Culture. The role includes opportunities to represent the Isle of Man at local events, as well as the possibility of attending festivals across the British Isles. Each bard will bring their own unique ideas and contributions, so the role is highly flexible and requires no set time commitments – only enthusiasm for sharing poetry.

The concept is the brainchild of Bridget Carter, head of the Manx Bard committee, supported by Hazel Teare, Di Benson, and our first living Manx Bard: Stacey Astill.

“Poetry has been enjoying a re-awakening over the last few years and that buzz is still very strong around performance poetry in particular,’ said Bridget.”

To enter, poets will be required to submit an entry form along with three of their own poems, and an outline of their proposals for possible projects to be undertaken during their year as the Manx Bard. Successful candidates at this stage will then be invited for interview to perform one of their poems to a panel of judges and to further discuss their aspirations for the post should they be awarded it.

On August 20th 2017, in the spirit of the Bardic tradition the winner, wearing ceremonial robes, will be inaugurated and take their official seat on the bespoke Bardic chair. Local wood artists Graham Hall and Simon Capelen were commissioned to create the chair, and Linda Davies designed the robes. Both the chair and the robes are permanently housed in the Legislative Buildings.

The Bardic tradition is a Celtic one, dating back to the times when the Bard was the spokesperson of a community. In recent years there has been a resurgence of interest in the Bardic tradition, and today there are several Bardic Chairs across the British Isles.

Entry forms and Rules can be obtained by either emailing, or by collecting from the Henry Bloom Noble or the College Library in Douglas


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