Walcott wins T S Eliot Prize

Nobel-winner Derek Walcott has won the 2010 T S Eliot Prize for Poetry, for his "risk-taking" collection White Egrets, published by Faber.

Walcott pipped nine other poets to the £15,000 prize, including Simon Armitage, Seamus Heaney and Annie Freud. The award is now in its 18th year and each of the shortlisted poets received £1,000, with the prizes awarded by T S Eliot's widow, Valerie Eliot, at a ceremony at the Wallace Collection last night [24th January].

Chair of the judges Anne Stevenson said: "This year's exceptionally strong and varied shortlist made it difficult to choose the winner, but the judges felt that Derek Walcott's White Egrets was a moving, risk-taking and technically flawless book by a great poet."

Walcott was born in St Lucia in 1930 and studied at the University College of the West Indies in Kingston, Jamaica. He won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1992, and is an honorary member of the American Academy and the Institute of Arts and Letters.

The prize is supported by the T S Eliot Estate, and sponsored by the John S Cohen Foundation.