The writer passed away on 22 August (15) after a long period of ill health, including a heart condition and two failed cataract operations which had left him almost blind, according to his friend and colleague Professor David Hopkins.

Hopkins writes, "The last few years were not kind to Charles. (His wife) Brenda, though by no means in robust health herself, displayed selfless devotion in making Charles as comfortable as possible towards the end, and was able, together with (their) two daughters, to organise things so that he was able to pass away peacefully at home."

Tomlinson released a number of poetry collections between 1951 and 2009 including Seeing is Believing, A Peopled Landscape, and The Way of a World.

He also worked as a graphic artist and as a translator of Italian and Spanish poetry. He was employed by Bristol University in England in 1956 and later became a professor, before retiring in 1992.

Tomlinson was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1974, and was awarded a Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE) medal for services to literature in 2001.