Towards Babingley includes poems exploring the author's Norfolk heritage and evoking settings across East Anglia, the Midlands and North of England. Against these varied backgrounds, Paul Berry explores universal themes of family, love, loss and longing. The strength of the poems is to highlight landscapes, their histories and the people who live in, or pass through them, combining to celebrate the often extraordinary nature of the ordinary and everday.
Paul's writing career began in the vibrant small press scene of the 1970s. This is his seventh collection. Through Eastern Arts Writers in the Community scheme he collaborated with schools and community groups across Eastern England encouraging creative writing. A finalist in the Eric Gregory Award, the Scottish Open Poetry Competition and the American Sandburg Livesay Award, he compiled the Norfolk volume in the Poet's England series (Brentham Press) and is author of a social history about life on and around airfields during World War Two.
Born in West Norfolk, his first job was as a local newspaper reporter, before training as a teacher in the East Midlands. He has worked for Norfolk Social Services and an NHS substance misuse service. Living near King's Lynn, he runs Centre Poets literature group which he started in 1976. Aside from writing poetry, he is a Trustee of the Robert Foot Leukaemia Fund and a volunteer at Cambridge's Royal Papworth Hospital, where he is a member of the Council of Governors.