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David Attwooll

David Attwooll English musician and poet

English musician and poet
The basics
Quick Facts
Intro English musician and poet
Countries United Kingdom
Occupations Poet Musician
Type Literature Music
Gender male
Birth 22 April 1949 (Twickenham, London Borough of Richmond upon Thames, Greater London, London)
Death 5 August 2016
Star sign TaurusTaurus
The details

David Attwooll (1949 – 5 August 2016) was a British poet and publisher. He also played drums, performing in an early incarnation of the avant-rock group Henry Cow.



Attwooll studied English at the University of Cambridge, where he joined an early incarnation of Henry Cow with fellow students, playing with the band in late 1968 and early 1969. Later in life, he drummed with a street band.

Academic publishing

Attwooll began a publishing career in 1970 at Oxford University Press, starting as a trainee editor. He rose to editorial director of trade and reference books, but moved to Century Hutchinson (later part of Random House) in 1989 to be the managing director of their paperback division. From 1992 to 2002, he was managing direct of Helicon, which he had founded as a management buyout of Random House's reference books. The company was later sold to WH Smith by Attwooll at a price of £5.6 million.

Attwooll then set up Attwooll Associates, offering licensing and consultancy business for the publishing industry. The company won the Independent Publishers' Guild GBS Award for Services to Independent Publishers, in 2009 and 2011.

Attwooll joined Liverpool University Press in 2004, following a family connection to the university, taking over as chair and turning around the company's fortunes.


Attwooll wrote poetry. He published two works with illustrator Andrew Walton.

His short collection Surfacing won a 2012/3 Poetry Business pamphlet prize. He won the Havant Poetry Competition first prize in 2015.

Personal life

Attwooll died of Erdheim–Chester disease. He was survived by his wife and three children.

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