John Edward Masefield, OM, was an English poet and writer, and Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom from 1930 until his death in 1967. He is remembered as the author of the classic children’s novels The Midnight Folk and The Box of Delights, and poems, one of the most well-known of which must be “Sea-Fever” published in his Salt-Water Ballads of 1902. These were inspired by several years before the mast when he left school – sounds like he had a fascinating early life.
In 1930, on the death of Robert Bridges, a new Poet Laureate was needed. Many felt that Rudyard Kipling was a likely choice, however, upon the recommendation of Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald, King George V appointed Masefield, who remained in office until his death in 1967. The only person to remain in the office for a longer period was Tennyson.