Kate Tempest Announces Brighton Festival Poetry Prize

Kate Tempest performing live

Brighton Festival has launched this year’s Peacock Poetry Prize which will have the theme of ‘everyday epic’, a subject chosen by poet and musician Kate Tempest who is Guest Director of this year’s festival.

Young writers from East and West Sussex aged between 8 and 19 years are invited to submit work which “responds to the subject in an imaginative and inventive way”.

Guest Director Kate Tempest said: “Music, literature, theatre, film – these things are so important, they bring us together into the same space, they give us ourselves, they bring us to life, they beam our humanity back to us in all its hideous beauty. And in these times, with the fear spreading everywhere and the divisions between us deepening daily, we desperately need to remember that we are all part of the same thing.”

The annual competition is a partnership between Brighton Festival and Brighton, Hove & Sussex Sixth Form College (BHASVIC).

The organisers hope to encourage young people across Sussex to write. Submissions are divided into four age groups: 8-11 years, 11-13 years 13-16 years and 16-19 years.

In addition, this year the Brighton and Hove environmental education project (BHee) will also be giving a special prize to a school pupil whose poem celebrates our interaction with the natural world.

Pippa Smith, Head of Creative Learning at Brighton Dome & Brighton Festival said: ‘The Peacock Poetry Prize is a fantastic opportunity for young people to get involved with Brighton Festival. I’m always taken aback at the number and range of submissions we receive, and this year I hope Kate Tempest’s theme of ‘everyday epic’ will inspire our young writers’ imaginations to produce some wonderful poetry once again.”

William Baldwin, BHASVIC Principal, said, ‘I am delighted that BHASVIC is once again able to promote the Peacock Poetry Competition with Brighton Festival across Sussex. I’m very much looking forward to reading this year’s entries on the theme of ‘Everyday Epic’ and to meeting the runners-up and winners in May!’

The competition is open to residents of Brighton & Hove, East and West Sussex. Each writer may submit up to three poems with a maximum length of 20 lines per poem. Entries must be emailed, together with full name, age and date of birth to peacock@brightonfestival.org or posted to Peacock Poetry Prize, Brighton Festival, 12a Pavilion Buildings, Castle Square, Brighton BN1 1EE..

The deadline for entries is 5pm on Monday 3 April 2017.

Photo: Abi Dainton (Flickr)

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