Poetry Award

2020 Walter Swan Poetry Prize

The latest poetry prize has been launched and is open for entries. For the first time it has a theme and it is a very appropriate one for these challenging times and lockdown: A Kindness.

 

You can find all the details here
There is a 30 line limit. The prize will be judged by the 2020 ILF Poet-in-Residence, assisted by the Wharfedale Poets. The top three prize winners will be invited to read their poems at an event at the 2020 Ilkley Literature Festival in October. The first, second and third prize winners will receive £200, £100 and £75 respectively. The winner will also win a one-to-one feedback session with a research fellow at the University of Leeds Poetry Centre. As with last year, it is open to everyone aged 18 and over, but there is a special additional prize for people aged 18-25. This prize will be judged by Rachel Bower, Leverhulme Research Fellow at the University of Leeds, and author of the poetry collection Moon Milk (2018). These top three prize winners will also be invited to read their poems at an event at the 2020 Festival. First, second and third prize winners will also receive £100, £75 and £50 respectively. In addition, the winner will receive a one-to-one feedback session with Rachel Bower. The closing date for entries is Friday 31 July 2020 and the entry fees is £6, reduced to £3 for those aged 18-25.

 

Niccola Swan, chair of the Walter Swan Trust, said, ‘We are really delighted to be sponsoring the Ilkley Literature Festival Poetry Prize again. The theme of ‘A Kindness’ links particularly well to Walter and his own interests and writing. He used to run a Facebook page called Kindness – the Golden Chain, and his own poems were often on this theme. One of his best-known poems is called ‘May You’ and it features these lines:

 

‘May your world be one of kindnesses both given and received
With no expectation, ever, of reward
May the world be the better for your having shared in it
May your memory live on for loving and being loved’

 

We wish much luck to all the poets who will be writing on this very important theme and look forward to reading the winning poems.’

 

2019 Walter Swan Poetry Prize

The judge and poet-in-residence in 2019 was the excellent poet Colette Bryce. You can read the top three shortlisted poems and those for the 18-25 age category here:here

 

The 2019 competition

We’re delighted to be sponsoring the Ilkley Literature Festival poetry competition again. The competition was launched in May and full details can be found here, including the six cash prizes: http://www.ilkleyliteraturefestival.org.uk/opportunities-for-writers/walter-swan-poetry-prize

 

We are very excited at the new element for young people (aged 18-25) with free submission for poems. The closing date is 31st July. We shall soon be able to share the news of winner announcement event and the names of the two judges: the poet-in-residence and the apprentice poet-in-residence. They will be assisted by the Wharfedale Poets with the long-listing.

 

 

2018 Walter Swan Poetry Prize

The judge was top poet Imtiaz Dharker and the event to announce the winners was held on the 11th October 2018. You can read the winning poems, the commended poems, and Imtiaz’s feedback on the link here

 

 

The 2017 competition: 

We were delighted to be sponsoring this for the second time with the Ilkley Literature Festival. Daljit Nagra, Radio 4 poet in residence, was the judge, assisted by the Wharfedale Poets.

 

Details of the winners, their poems and the feedback from Daljit can be found here:

http://www.ilkleyliteraturefestival.org.uk/posts/autumn-festival/2017-walter-swan-trust-poetry-competition-results

 

 

The 2016 competition:

 The Walter Swan Trust was delighted to sponsor the Ilkley Literature Festival Poetry Competition in 2016. Top poet Andrew McMillan was the judge of the competition, with assistance from the Wharfedale Poets.  Prizes of £200, £100 and £75 were awarded by Andrew and the winning poems were performed at the Ilkley Literature Festival on 16th October 2016.

 

Details of the winners and their winning poems can be found here: http://www.ilkleyliteraturefestival.org.uk/posts/news/2016-walter-swan-trust-poetry-prize-results

 

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