About Ian

Born way back in 1970 in Rochdale near Manchester I first started my professional life on the fruit and veg stall at Tesco’s! After various jobs including frozen food delivery driver, flower salesman and glass collector I eventually qualified as a primary school teacher in 1992.

Eight long, exhausting but wonderful years later I decided to quit the classroom and have a go at writing children’s poetry and suddenly I realised that life would never be the same again!

Since October 2000 I have worked as a professional children’s poet and performer and have visited literally hundreds of schools, libraries and festivals both here in the UK and all over the world.

I have work published by Macmillan, Scholastic, AC Black, Oxford University Press and Hands Up Books to name just a few. My work was recently featured on BBC1’s Match of the Day and I have performed many times on regional and national radio.

I’m a single Dad and the proud owner of twins called James and Madeleine. We live in Rossendale in Lancashire where it rains- A LOT!


“Ian worked with around 300 children over two days across two schools in my federation. Ian’s infectious enthusiasm for poetry, and hilarious performances had everyone engaged and inspired. Over the course of the two days every child had a go at writing poems and were invited to perform them in a whole school assembly – this developed their love of writing and built their self-confidence at the same time. We also booked Ian to deliver an after-school family writing workshop which had rave reviews and excellent feedback. If you want to give poetry a focus, writing a lift and performance a boost then I can’t recommend Ian enough to schools. Easy to deal with, highly professional and excellent value for money. Brilliant.”
Max Kelly - Executive Headteacher, Laxey Primary School/Dhoon Primary School, Isle of Man

“Ian delivered a fantastic couple of days for all of our near 500 pupils, with engaging, interactive workshops for each year group which were inspiring and empowering, bringing poetry to all in a brilliantly entertaining way – highly recommended!”
David Jenkins - Executive Headteacher, Rhumsaa Primary School/Sulby Primary School, Isle of Man

“Ian’s poems and poetry workshops are in a different league!”
Steve Bower - BBC Match of the Day Presenter/ Commentator

“Thank you so much for such an amazing day today! Best assembly ever and just so wonderful to see all my class so engaged and excited about poetry! Thank you!”
Katie Hargreaves - Mont Nicolle Primary School, Jersey

“Ian, thank you for the most amazing day in school. The children of St Barnabas, and the not so covert children from St Helena’s, had the most fabulous inspirational day. Their faces as they worked, so enthusiastically on poetry, was a joy. The high jinks with the staff made the day! Thank you.”
Rachel Murray - St Barnabas Primary School, Scunthorpe

“A huge thanks Ian for inspiring our school this week. The morning assembly was outstanding & was the highlight of the day. I’ve not laughed that much in school ever!”
Sarah Stevenson - St Wilfrid’s CE Primary School, Manchester

“Thank you Ian for coming to Henry Green Primary School, Dagenham and doing two fantastic days of poetry and performance. I can’t thank you enough for creating such a buzz about poetry not only with the children but with all the staff too. So good to work with you again, I look forward to the next time 🙂”
Samantha Simmonds - Henry Green Primary School, Ilford

“Thanks Ian for an amazing three days in North Lincolnshire #WordsCount Conference inspiring our children, teachers and practitioners with your pretty awesome poetry 😁📖”
Sarah Tipler - North Lincolnshire LEA

“Thank you so much for a brilliant, fun filled day of poetry workshops with our children at Roundthorn Primary Academy in Oldham. The staff and children thoroughly enjoyed the day and were inspired by your enthusiastic, hilarious poetry! We hope that your second visit to our school will not be your last! 🙂”
Patricia Wood - Roundthorne Academy, Oldham



Go to the Head!

Get ​a copy of my new poetry book Go To The Head for free!

Dive into this collection of poems about life at school, at home, in the big wide world… even in the depths of the sea – and you’re sure to come up smiling.