A PRESTIGIOUS literary cash award has been made to a poet and a composer to hold a special concert in Bangor marking the work of Welsh poet RS Thomas.

The Royal Society of Literature (RSL) awarded the money to Owen Lowery, from St Helen's for a collaborative project with Bangor composer and musician Ellen Davies.

The £2,800 will fund a production of “RS Thomas for a New Generation," being held in Bangor Cathedral on Sunday, July 1. The RSL honour, was part of its “Literature Matters” awards, and was presented by international best selling author Philip Pullman, at a ceremony at the British Library in London, on Tuesday, January 30. Owen, from St Helen's, was paralysed after a spinal injury at the age of 18 and Ellen, a former Bangor University student has overcome the limitations of dyslexia to pursue music and composition.

In 'The Poet Prevails' Owen will be performing his work inspired by Welsh poet RS Thomas. Ellen's work 'Pilgrimages,' her latest orchestral composition, is also inspired by the poetry of RS Thomas and also the landscape of Pen Ll?n.

The concert will be a world premiere and will include performances by Ensemble Cymru along with the Royal Harpist Anne Denholm

The Bangor Cathedral event is part of an annual poetry and art festival organised by the RS Thomas and ME Eldridge Society in Aberdaron, which runs for three days from June 28. Ellen said: "I am honoured and excited to be involved in such a prestigious first for the RS Thomas Society in the wonderful space of Bangor Cathedral.

"I'm looking forward to working with Ensemble Cymru and the royal harpist Ann Denholm to bring to life my music and the poetry and place it reflects.

Owen, who was a former British Judo champion, was paralysed from the shoulders down, and still needs a ventilator to breathe.

Owen said: “Literature matters to me – it saved my intellectual life.”

He has two poetry collections published and is a regular performer of his own poetry, reading in time with his breathing machine.

The Bangor performance, at 2pm, includes a world premiere of 'The Other' a poem by Thomas set to music by American composer Robert L Moran, performed by the Cathedral choir directed by Paul Booth.