Poetry London 2019 Competition

Entries to the Poetry London Clore Prize are now closed. The winner will be announced on our website in July. Thank you to everyone who entered.

Poetry London Competition 2019


Judge of the Poetry London Clore Prize 2019: Sasha Dugdale is a poet, translator and current Writer-in-Residence at St John’s College Cambridge. She has published four collections of poetry, the most recent of which is Joy, published by Carcanet in 2017. In the same year she was awarded a Cholmondeley Award for Poetry. Dugdale translates poetry and plays from Russian. She is currently working on translations of Maria Stepanova’s poems for publication by Bloodaxe in 2019, and her prose for publication by Fitzcarraldo in 2020. Sasha is former editor of Modern Poetry in Translation and co-editor of the international anthology Centres of Cataclysm (Bloodaxe, 2016).

1st prize £5,000
2nd prize £2,000
3rd prize £1,000
Four commendations £500
plus publication in the magazine
Closing date: 1 May 2019

See the Poetry London Clore Prize winners 2018

Competition Rules

1. Entries must be in English, your own unaided work, and not a translation of another poet. Entries must not have been previously published or self-published, in print or online, or have won a prize in another competition. The maximum length is 80 lines.

2. Your name and address must not appear on the poems entered, nor any other marks that could identify you. Enter the title of each poem on the entry form, or the first line for untitled poems. Photocopies of the form are acceptable. Online entry will be available via our website: www.poetrylondon.co.uk from 1 February 2019

3. Entries must be typed or written clearly in black on white A4 paper or US letter size, and on one side of the paper only.

4. For poems that are longer than one page, the complete poem must be stapled in the top left hand corner. Please don’t staple different poems together. Each poem will be judged separately on its own merits.

5. You may enter as many poems as you wish, accompanied by the appropriate entry fee. For Poetry London subscribers the entry fee is £3 per poem; for non-subscribers £7. You are also eligible for the lower entry fee if you take out a subscription now: see form for details. Entry fees must be in UK currency, and cheques/postal orders payable to ‘Poetry London’. Payment can also be made through a PayPal account to competition.entry@poetrylondon.co.uk

6. The closing date is 1 May 2019. Winners will be notified by 16 July 2019; the first, second and third prizewinners will be published in the Autumn 2019 issue of Poetry London and on the magazine’s website. The prizes will be awarded at our Autumn launch reading in London in September (date to be confirmed). Copyright remains with the authors, but we reserve the right to publish the winning poems.

7. If you would like a ‘receipt’ for your entry, send a small envelope marked receipt, self-addressed and stamped with UK postage. For a list of the winners and details of the awards reading, please enclose an envelope marked results, likewise stamped or with an IRC. The results will also be published on our website, www.poetrylondon.co.uk by 16 July 2019.

8. We are unable to return entries, so please don’t send your only copy. We will not enter into any correspondence about entries, or make changes to entries received. Incomplete submissions will not be accepted. The judge’s decision is final. Your entry in the competition means you accept these rules. We will abide by good practice in the running of this competition, but cannot be held responsible for circumstances beyond our control such as failure of postal delivery. Should the named judge be unable to proceed, we aim to find an alternative judge of equivalent standing as a poet. Prizes may be withheld or altered if we receive no outstanding poems, or insufficient entries.


Must entries be unpublished?
Yes. Poems that have already been published are not eligible to win the Poetry London Competition.

Does having a poem on my own blog, Twitter or Facebook page count as website publication?

Do line spaces between stanzas count as part of the 80 line limit? What about titles, epigraphs and dedications?
The 80 line limit applies only to the written lines of the poem, not the lines between stanzas. Titles, epigraphs and dedications are not counted as lines either.

If my poem is a few more than 80 lines, will it be disqualified?
Yes. Poems must be within the 80-line limit to be eligible for the Poetry London Competition.

Can I make changes after my poem has been submitted?
Changes cannot be made to poems after they have been submitted. If you want to submit a more recent version of your poem please send it as a separate entry.

I accidentally left my name or contact details on my entry, will my poem be disqualified?
Yes. You will need to resubmit your entry (refunds cannot be made).

Are simultaneous submissions allowed?
You may submit your poem to other competitions or publications at the same time you submit it to the Poetry London Competition on the understanding that if you win our competition you will immediately withdraw it from elsewhere. If your poem wins another competition or is published before our winners have been announced please let us know (refunds will not be made).

How will you know which poems are mine if I don’t write my name on them?
Poems are coded by administrative staff so that they can be judged as anonymous works and then tied back to your entry form once the poems have been judged.

Can I send the same poem that I entered in last year’s competition?

Can I enter a revision of my first poem as a second entry?

I accidentally submitted the wrong poem. Can I switch it?
No. The rules state that alterations cannot be made to poems once they have been submitted. If you want the judges to consider another poem, please send it as a new entry.

Can you check you received my poem?
If you want confirmation of a postal entry please include an SAE with your poem and entry form, which we will post back to you. Online entries will be confirmed by email after you submit. Please do not telephone the office or email to ask if your entry has arrived unless you have not received automatic confirmation by email or your SAE (please allow a reasonable amount of time before chasing SAEs as entries are processed in batches).

Can you check that the poem I entered is the one I intended to enter?
The competition generally receives thousands of poems each year and staff cannot go through these to find a specific entrant’s work.

Since entering my poem to the Poetry London Competition my poem has won another competition / been published elsewhere. What should I do?
Please contact us to let us know and withdraw your poems (refunds cannot be made).


Poetry London is delighted to announce that this year the Poetry London Competition is generously funded by the Clore Duffield Foundation and match-funded by Catalyst Evolve, Arts Council England.