A WORCESTER poet says he is "overwhelmed" by the support he has received after winning a prestigious poetry prize.
Kieran Davis, a 37-year-old father-of-four of Fairmount Road, Brickfields, is celebrating after his poem was shortlisted for the 'Loneliness Project' run by Theatre Cloud, and then named the 'most popular' entry after a public vote.
He gained 212 votes, more than 300 views on You Tube and more than 500 ‘shares’ on social media to land him the coveted award.
The award is part of a year of celebrations for Mr Davis, who is a member of Worcester Writers Circle; he is having his debut collection of poetry, 'Lacuna' published in the summer by Black Pear Press, and will be celebrating his 10th wedding anniversary in August and 10 years sober in December.
As part of his entry into the Theatre Cloud competition, he saw his poem read aloud by actor Ben Scott - who Mr Davis says read the poem in a completely new way to how he imagined it.
He said: "To even be shortlisted is absolutely amazing, I have never been shortlisted for anything before.
"When I found out I had won the most popular award was incredible.
"The support from everyone has been so overwhelming in a beautiful way. I cannot describe how proud I am."
Mr Davis has been writing poetry for 23 years, although he has got more serious about the idea in the last five years. He joined the Worcester Writers Circle three years ago and credits this as a key part of his rise.
He said: "Joining the Worcester Writers Circle is the best thing that has ever happened to me. It is a supportive and loving group which was the perfect place to hone my craft, I can never express how grateful I am to them."
Mr Davis, who works as a catering manager at The Chase School in Malvern, will be officially launching his poetry collection at Drummonds, in New Street, Worcester, on Sunday, August 14.
He is also signed up to perform at the Worcestershire Literary Festival and at the Evesham Festival of Words.