Simon Armitage was born in 1963 in Yorkshire. After studying at Portsmouth and Manchester universities, he initially became a probation officer - some of the poems in his first published collection, Zoom (1989), draw upon his experiences. He then had various other jobs, including shelf stacking and being a DJ. He has written several poetry collections. He often uses the Yorkshire dialect and is interested in dialects and slang. Many of his poems contain puns and other word-play. He also writes about everyday events in a thought-provoking way.
He still lives in Yorkshire, dividing his time between writing and broadcasting.