Caddel, Richard (Ivo) 1949-2003

views updated

CADDEL, Richard (Ivo) 1949-2003

OBITUARY NOTICE—See index for CA sketch: Born July 13, 1949, in Bedford, England; died of leukemia April 1, 2003, in Durham, England. Editor, publisher, librarian, and author. Caddel was a poet and founder of poetry imprint Pig Press. He received a B.A. from the University of Newcastle on Tyne in 1971, after which he also studied library science at Newcastle Polytechnic for a year. His first job was as a reader in music—and later history and English—at Newcastle University; he then began a library career at the University of Durham, where he was senior library assistant from 1972 to 1986. At the same time he began library work, he started Pig Press with his wife, Ann. Pig Press published the works of such poets as Robert Creeley and Basil Bunting, the later of whose verses Caddel would later edit in several collections, including Basil Bunting: Uncollected Poems (1991) and The Complete Poems/Basil Bunting (1994). Caddel's work on these collections, along with his creation of the Basil Bunting Poetry Centre in 1988, is considered by many to have been important in keeping an interest in Bunting's writings alive. Caddel himself was a fairly prolific poet whose works, critics have noted, show the influence of such writers as Bunting, Ezra Pound, and William Carlos Williams. His first collection, Heron (1973), was followed by almost a dozen other poetry books. Caddel continued to write and direct Pig Press while earning an income at the University of Durham, becoming an assistant librarian there in 1986 and director of the Basil Bunting Poetry Centre in 1988. Some of his important verse collections during this time include Sweet Cicely: New and Selected Poems (1983; second edition, 1988), and Uncertain Times (1990). More recent verse works include Ground (1994), Larksong Signal (1997), and Underwriter (1999). Prose books by Caddel include Deadly Sins (1984) and Quiet Music of Words: Richard Caddel in Conversation with Anthony Flowers (2001), and his many edited works include Pete Laver: Offcomers (1985), Sharp Study and Long Toil: Essays on Basil Bunting (1995), and Other: British and Irish Poetry since 1970 (1999), which he edited with Peter Quartermain. After the accidental death in 1995 of his son, Tom, Caddel's poems became understandably marked by his grief over this loss. Later, when he was diagnosed with leukemia in 1999, he decided to close Pig Press, and in 2000 he resigned from the staff of Durham University Library. However, he continued to do poetry readings, traveling widely, and directed the Basil Bunting Poetry Centre until his death. His last poetry collection, Magpie Woods: Selected Poems, was published in 2002.



Writers Directory, 18th edition, St. James Press (Detroit, MI), 2003.


Independent (London, England), April 11, 2003, p. 20.

Times (London, England), May 13, 2003, p. 31.