Young Poets Competition 2021

Top Prize £300 - deadline Friday 5th March


The 2021 prize is kindly supported by L&Q.

Here's what you have to do!

Who can enter? Anyone aged 5 to 21 living in the UK
What is the deadline?
5.30pm on Friday 5th March 2021
What are the Prizes?

5-10 years: £100
11 to 16 years: £200
17 to 21 years: £300
PLUS The winning and selected best poems will be published in a special Festival book

Judges include Tracey Corderoy, whose books include the Shifty McGifty and Hubble Bubble series.

The Small Print

Please read this very carefully:

  1. The judges' decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.
  2. All entries must be in English, original and must not have been published or have won competitions elsewhere. Stratford Literary Festival will retain the copyright to the published collection of winning stories, but authors will retain the copyright to their individual submissions.
  3. Poems must be a maximum of 600 words.
  4. The competition is open to all ages, professions and nationalities from 5 years to 21 years at date of competition deadline who are living in the UK.
  5. Poems can be written on any theme or topic but must not be offensive, inflammatory or defamatory.
  6. We accept only one submission per entry and per person. All entries must comply with entry requirements and entries not submitted by email and in a Word document will not be considered.
  7. Please name the file with your name and age as of 5th March 2021, and all entries must include your name, address, and your age as of 5th March 2021 at the top of the page. Please note we DO NOT accept jpg images of poems, submissions via Google Doc link or odt files or similar. Any submitted in this form will not be considered.
  8. Entries will not be acknowledged on submission and will not be accepted after the closing date.
  9. Writers will be notified before the launch of the Festival on 8th May 2021. Winning entries and runners-up, and best submissions, will appear in a Festival book which will be on sale at Waterstones Stratford-upon-Avon from 9th May 2021 and online via our website. Authors of those submissions to be included will be notified.
  10. By entering and supplying your email address you are allowing us to notify you about the Stratford Literary Festival. Your information will not be shared with any third parties.
  11. Stratford Literary Festival is a registered charity in England: 1164662

Enter here

Please remember your poem must be attached to your email as a WORD document.

2020 Winners

5-10 years Category:

WINNER: Aurora Blue (10)
RUNNER-UP: Delilah Howells (10)

Highly-Commended: Ethan Hatz (9), Max Tanqueray (6), Molly Spencer (5) and Elianna Wambui Kagai (10)

11-16 years Category:

WINNER: Joyce Chen (16)
RUNNER-UP: Tommy Ward (12)

Highly-Commended: Martha Blue (12), Amelie Friess (15) and Iona Mandal (13)

17-21 years Category:

WINNER: Isobel Lawrence (17)
RUNNER-UP: Grace Ridley (17)

Highly-Commended: Zoë Talbot (17)

Our thanks to poet James Carter for helping us to judge the shortlist!

The Competition is supported by L&Q and the Executors of the Felix Dennis Estate.
About L&Q

L&Q say: 'At L&Q we believe passionately that people's health, security and happiness depend on where they live. We house around 250,000 people in more than 105,000 homes, primarily across London and the South East – but we’re more than just a registered charitable housing association. We create better places to live by delivering high quality homes, neighbourhoods and housing services that people can afford. With nearly 60 years’ experience, we have what it takes to do things right and provide long-term support to our communities where they need it. To find out more about our homes in Warwickshire, please visit us here.'

Felix Dennis
was a publisher, poet and planter of trees, and a great supporter of the Festival. He died in 2014. Our thanks to his Literary Executors who are supporting the competitiononce again in his memory to encourage writers and poets.

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