Horsham Millais School poet on the right line with critics

Philippa Crundwell at her poetry book launch and signing of 'Seventy Beats' at Horsham Waterstones - picture submitted
Philippa Crundwell at her poetry book launch and signing of 'Seventy Beats' at Horsham Waterstones - picture submitted

A talented young Horsham poet’s first collection has been released to wide critical acclaim.

Philippa Crundwell’s Seventy Beats was published by The King’s England Press in July.

The 17-year-old poet sprang to prominence after winning the Ocado National Poetry Competition in 2013 with her Poem for Peace, and the her first collection garnered huge anticipation. Michael Morpurgo OBE, former children’s laureate, commented: “There is a clarity in these poems, a fresh voice, unencumbered by the baggage of age. The writer looks you in the eye and tells how it is for her. Honest, moving writing.”

Ali Sparkes, best-selling author of the Shapeshifter series added: “Philippa Crundwell blends inner with outer landscapes, overlaying nature with moods - from contemplative sorrow to blind fury - from mountains to flocks of starlings... One to watch...”, while Peter James, internationally-acclaimed best-selling thriller-writer said:  “I’ve been really impressed on my first look by the breadth of subject matter and depth of maturity of Philippa’s poems. She shows a maturing beyond her years.”

Philippa Crundwell told the West Sussex County Times:  “I wrote my first poem at the age of five and haven’t been able to stop writing poems, short stories and plays since. I’m also an ambassador for New Writing South, and one of the creators of the Writers’ Manifesto. I’m passionate about the importance of creative writing in education and believe writing is something that should be available to everyone everywhere.”

Steve Rudd, of The King’s England Press, said: “Our attention was drawn to Philippa’s work and I could immediately see its merit. Once in a while, a poet comes along whose work surprises you.

Seventy Beats, stands out not least because of the astonishing range of her attempts at various voices and personae other than her own, and to find it here in a writer not yet twenty years of age is nothing less than amazing.”

She will be holding a book signing at The Mint House Shop in Hurstpierpoint on December 12 from 11am and then taking part in an event at Horsham Library on December 19 from 10.30am. Meet her before she’s famous.