The Seamus Heaney Centre are currently looking for the poets of the future to attend this year’s Seamus Heaney Poetry Summer School. 

The Summer School is an annual intensive week focused on creative development for emerging poets. The programme features feedback sessions, 1-1s with a range of highly commended poets as well as daily workshops and group sessions. The programme, led by Professor Nick Laird will also feature evening discussions and screened virtual readings. 

Last year’s programme featured sessions from poets such as Charlie Lang, Stephen Sexton, Susannah Dickey and Tara McEvoy. When you’ve completed the 2021 Summer School you will be invited to take part in a student showcase where all students will have the opportunity to read their own work. This will either be produced into a short film or a podcast. Participation in the showcase is completely optional so if you suffer from a little stage fright there’s no pressure! 

Iain Whiteley attended last year’s Poetry Online Summer School and said, “The 1-1s with tutors were excellent: illuminating, educational and full of practical, helpful advice…The whole week was thoroughly inspiring – and extremely busy.”

The course will take place entirely on-line this year via MS Teams, as it did last year. Don’t worry if you’re not tech savvy, there will be tech support provided in advance. If you don’t have full time access to a computer £500 bursaries are available to those who would otherwise be unable to attend. 

Lorraine Carey also attended the Poetry Online Summer School in 2020 and says, “Receiving feedback and critique in such depth was brilliant and it was interesting how the tutors had very different opinions on aspects of certain poems – addressing form and language and the thread of consistency…”

To apply for your place on the course just complete an application form, available at, just follow the links to the Seamus Heaney Centre. As well as your application you also have to include samples of your work in the form on 4 poems. Send these in as a single PDF to, and don’t forget to label them clearly with your name. 

The deadline for submissions is Friday 30th April 2021 and all successful candidates will be notified on Friday 7th May 2021. The Poetry Summer School Programme runs from Monday 28th June through to Friday 2nd July. 

For more information visit Places are limited and apply to over 18’s only.