2023 marks 20 years since the passing of Launceston poet Charles Causley.

Charles spent most of his life living in Launceston, apart from his years of war-time service and a period of teacher-training. He lived at Cyprus Well, now owned by the Causley Trust, for 50 years until his death at the age of 86, on 4th November 2003.

Causley was raised by his mother, Laura, to whose care he devoted himself in later life.

Leaving school at 15, Causley worked for some years as a clerk in local firms but continued to develop his early literary interests by reading widely and writing plays for local production.

His first published play, Runaway, appeared when he was only 19, and was broadcast on the BBC’s West Country radio service shortly before the outbreak of World War 2, when Causley was in his early 20s.

After serving in the Royal Navy as an Ordinary Seaman and Petty Officer, his experience formed the basis of many poems and a number of short stories.

After the war, Causley qualified as a teacher, and returned to his native Launceston to teach in his own childhood school and other primary schools there. He remained in that career — writing, editing and broadcasting in his spare time — until taking early retirement in 1976 to become a full-time writer.

The 20th anniversary of his passing is at the heart of the Causley Trust’s programming for this year.

To find out more about their events and projects and how you can support their work, see causleytrust.org.