Fergus Allen was born in Dublin in 1921. After schools in Dublin and Waterford he read Engineering in Trinity College, Dublin, where he was also active in College societies and wrote light verse for the then College magazine, T.C.D., which he now describes as useful training. In the latter part of World War 2 economic necessity obliged him to move to England, where—apart from periodic visits to Ireland—he has lived ever since. He ended his professional career as First Civil Service Commissioner in the British civil service. He had poems published sporadically throughout his adult life, but after his formal retirement he found himself writing much more actively. His first collection, The Brown Parrots of Providencia was published by Faber & Faber in 1993, and Who Goes There? and Mrs Power Looks Over the Bay followed in 1996 and 1999, while Before Troy appeared from CB Editions in 2010. Fergus Allen lived with his wife (another Dubliner) in a village in Berkshire. He died in August 2017.
"This is beautiful writing; but it also has about it the savagery of the authentic. Allen does that rare thing: he adheres to the true north of poetry." — Fiona Sampson, The Irish Times
"84 years young, Allen writes poetry that is limpid, very subtle and marvellously wise." — William Boyd, summer 2006 reading recommendations, The Guardian