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Kathryn Bevis

©Tina Norris Photography

Kathryn Bevis

All of us at Winchester Poetry Festival were so very sad to hear of the death of Kathryn Bevis yesterday. Kathryn has been a good friend and supporter of Winchester Poetry Festival over many years - volunteering her time behind the scenes and featuring in the festival programme as her career blossomed.

She was appointed as the Hampshire Poet 2020/2021, which reached out to many people of all ages and backgrounds.  

Kathryn’s poems were widely published, with her debut pamphlet, Flamingo (Seren, 2022) named as one of the Poetry Society’s ‘Books of the Year’ for 2022 and shortlisted for the Saboteur Award for Best Poetry Pamphlet, 2022. The poem from it, ‘My body tells me that she’s filing for divorce’ was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem – Written – 2023.

Her debut collection, The Butterfly House (Seren, 2024) was published in March, and explores her late stage cancer diagnosis - before and after. The poems within it attest to the enduring power of a life lived in gratitude for love. We urge you to read it.

Kathryn founded The Writing School Online to offer development and coaching for writers to develop their poetic career.

In all her work, she touched the hearts of all those that were fortunate to work with her as poets, as learners, as listeners, as readers.  We are honoured to have been able, with Kathryn’s agreement, to rename Winchester Poetry Prize’s Hampshire Prize as the Kathryn Bevis Prize, to continue her dedication to, and support of, poets and poetry within our county. 

It was always a joy to hear Kathryn’s beautiful expressive voice and the meaning she was able to create and bring to the poetry she wrote and shared. We will miss her so very much, and send our heartfelt condolences to Kathryn’s family and friends. 

Kathryn’s family have invited those that knew her to share their thoughts and memories here:

photographer unknown (please get in touch so we can credit you)

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