Guernsey International Poetry Competition 2021

Judge: Kate Clanchy

See the winners

Sponsored by

Guernsey Post Guernsey Arts Commission

The Guernsey Literary Festival presents a competition that could deliver your work to thousands of readers.

Winning entries will be displayed

  • on Guernsey buses
  • a smaller selection will take part in a second, larger display at Guernsey Airport, then all over the islands

Download 2021 information leaflet

Poems on the Move

Your poem could be on show in 2021. The Guernsey Literary Festival, together with the Guernsey Arts Commission and Guernsey Post, presents a competition that could deliver your work to thousands of readers.

Winning entries are selected in two phases: 21 poems will be chosen, and 9 of these will take part in a second, larger display, first at Guernsey Airport, then all over the island.

Entries must be no longer than 14 lines and must fit on a single A4 page.

Join our newsletter

Guernsey Literary Festival 2021

Guernsey’s natural beauty, and its picturesque harbour town of St Peter Port, make the island an exceptional location for a literary festival. We offer a varied and energetic celebration of literature with something for everyone – from aspiring writers to families looking for a fun day out. For more information on events in 2021 visit guernseyliteraryfestival.com

We invite you to join us for the International Poetry Competition Winners’ Reading on 12th May 2021.

Categories

  • Open Poetry

    ages 18 and over*

    Entries £4 per poem or enter 3 poems for £10

  • Channel Islands’ Poetry

    ages 18 and over, born or resident* in the Channel Islands

    Entries £4 per poem or enter 3 poems for £10

  • Young People’s Poetry

    aged 11-17*

    Entry free

*age and resident on 15th January 2021

Poems submitted in the Channel Island category are also entered into the Open category

Our Judge for 2021
Kate Clanchy

Photo of Kate Clanchy

Kate Clanchy is a poet, writer, journalist and teacher. Her poetry collection Slattern won a Forward Prize and her short story The Not-Dead and the Saved won both the 2009 BBC National Short Story Award and the VS Pritchett Memorial Prize. Her novel Meeting the English was shortlisted for the Costa Prize. Her BBC Radio 3 programme about her work with students was shortlisted for the Ted Hughes prize. In 2018 she was appointed MBE for services to literature. The anthology of her students’ work England : Poems from a School was published to great acclaim. In 2020 she was awarded the Orwell Prize for Political Writing for her book Some Kids I Taught and What They Taught Me, and published How To Grow Your Own Poem.

Filter judge Candy Neubert is a poetry reader for the Bridport Prize. Her last two collections Channel and Island, were partly inspired by Guernsey.

2021 Winners

  • Open Category

    1st Prize: ‘Pruning The Laurel’, Ros Woolner, UK, £1000

    2nd Prize: ‘Flack’, Katriona Campbell, UK, £500

    3rd Prize: ‘The Last Changing Room’, Ros Woolner, UK, £250


  • Channel Islands’ Category

    1st Place: ‘She’s Not Out Of The Woods Yet’, Camille Brouard, Guernsey

    2nd Place: ‘Where Are Your Architecture Critics Now?’, Poppy Bristow, Alderney

    3rd Place: ‘Warp And Weft’, Judy Mantle, Jersey

  • Young People’s Category

    1st Place: ‘School Bus’, Emily Hunt, Warwick

    2nd Place: ‘Sonnet to Surrender’, Armance Flesselle, France

    3rd Place: ‘Modern Foreign Language’, Robert Ebner-Statt, UK

    Highly Commended: ‘Tinnitus’, Holly Harrison, N.Ireland ‘Peacocks’, Freya Leech, UK ‘The People At The Pond’, Madeleine Jones, UK

Judge’s Report 2021

Poems on the Buses Winners

  • ‘After Three Years’, Vasiliki Albedo, Greece

    ‘Ros’, Carole Bromley, York

    ‘The Fishmonger’, Carole Bromley, York

    ‘It Seems Like Yesterday’, Christina Buckton, Cambridge

  • ‘Have-nots’, Jordan Guillou, Guernsey

    ‘Twenty Moons’, Jo Haslam, Huddersfield

    ‘Unsung’, Stephen Keeler, Ullapool

    ‘Suddenly’, Shirley Nicholson, Manchester

  • ‘Mackerel’, Judy O’kane, N.Ireland

    ‘True Love’, Bilston, Steve Pottinger, West Midlands, UK

    ‘Start At The Start’, Owen Rees, Manchester UK

    ‘2000’, Mark Totterdell, Exeter

12 poems listed alphabetically by poet's surname.

All poems from the Poems on the Buses Exhibition.

Previous Competitions