Guernsey International Poetry Competition 2020

Judge: Simon Armitage

Read the 2019 Winners

Sponsored by

Guernsey Post

The Guernsey Literary Festival, together with the generous support of Guernsey Post, 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

Poems on the Move

Your poem could be on show in 2020. The Guernsey Literary Festival, together with the Guernsey Arts Commission and the generous support of 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.

Guernsey Literary Festival 2020

Guernsey’s natural beauty, and its picturesque harbour town of St Peter Port, make the island an exceptional location for a literary festival. The eighth Guernsey Literary Festival takes place from 29th April – 3rd May. 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 details of the usual heady mix of writers, talks, workshops and performance visit the Guernsey Literary Festival website.

We invite you to join us for the International Poetry Competition Winners’ Reading on 29th April 2020.

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 12-17*

    Entry free

Entries open 15th September

*age and resident on 15th January 2020

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

Our Judge for 2019
Simon Armitage

Photo of Simon Armitage

Simon Armitage is the UK Poet Laureate and was Oxford Professor of Poetry (2015-2019). His numerous accolades include an Ivor Novello Award for song-writing in the BAFTA-winning film Feltham Sings and the 2018 Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry. Armitage has published 28 collections of poetry, including his latest, Sandettie Light Vessel Automatic, and his acclaimed translation of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. He also writes extensively for television and radio, and is the author of two novels and the non-fiction bestsellers All Points North, Walking Home and Walking Away. His theatre works include The Last Days of Troy, performed at Shakespeare's Globe in 2014. He was appointed Professor of Poetry at Leeds University in 2017.

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

Photo: Peter James Millson

2019 Winners

  • Open Category

    1st Prize: ‘Passing It On’ Sharon Black, France, £1000

    2nd Prize: ‘Jacob’, Chris Hardy, London, £500

    3rd Prize: ‘When I Found Some Women With Bellies’, Holly Hopkins, Manchester, £250


  • Channel Islands’ Category

    1st Place: ‘Small Worlds’, Judy Mantle, Jersey

    2nd Place: ‘Letting Go’, Juliette Hart, Jersey

    3rd Place: ‘Technical Advance’, Susie Gallienne, Guernsey

  • Young People’s Category

    1st Place: ‘Reflections’, E Wen Wong, New Zealand

    2nd Place: Travels Across Time’, E Wen Wong, New Zealand

Read the 2019 Winners Judge’s Report 2019

Poems on the Buses Winners

  • ‘Every Time I Came Home’, Alison Binney, Cambridge

    ‘Storm in a Teacup’, Alison Binney, Cambridge

    ‘The Gun Was One Thing’, Carole Bromley, North Yorkshire

    ‘Dreamtime’, Christina Buckton, Cambridge

  • ‘1960’, Valerie Darville, London

    ‘Barn’, Ian Enters, Somerset

    ‘Bull Male, Sleeping’, Abigail Ottley, Cornwall

    ‘Still’, Jane Pearn, Scottish Borders

    ‘Table, Window’, Simon Richey, London

  • ‘Shipwrecked’, David Smith, Derbyshire

    ‘Listen’, Peter Wallis, Norfolk

    ‘Blackberries’, Richard Westcott, Devon

    ‘Cemetery, With Children’, Susan Wicks, Kent

13 poems listed alphabetically by poet's surname.

All poems from the Poems on the Buses Exhibition.

Previous Competitions