“Entering the Foyle Young Poets of the Year competition was one of the best things I’ve ever done”
– Former Foyle Winner and 2012 Judge, Helen Mort
The Foyle Young Poets of the Year Award is an opportunity for any young poet aged 11-17 to accelerate their writing career. Since it was founded in 1998 the Award has kick-started the career of some of today’s most exciting new voices, such as Helen Mort, a successful poet whose first collection was recently published by Chatto & Windus. With entries from over 7,600 young people this year across from the UK and worldwide, it is the largest competition of its kind and its importance is widely attested.
Each year 100 winners (85 Commendations and 15 Overall Winners) are selected by a team of high profile judges, and will receive their awards at an annual prize-giving event on National Poetry Day. Thanks to funding from the Foyle Foundation the competition remains completely free to enter and we are able to offer a wide range of prizes, opportunities and resources. Overall Winners will have their poems published in the annual Foyle Anthology, 24,000 of which are distributed to poets, teachers, students, libraries, schools and arts organisations right across the UK. Additionally, winners attend a week-long intensive residential Arvon course where they develop their creative writing skills alongside fellow poets or benefit from poetry residencies at their school followed by distance mentoring (age dependent).
These winners are among the most promising young literary talent in the UK, and the ceremony is the first step in an ongoing process of developing this potential; many of our former winners have gone on to publish work with major publishing houses such as Faber & Faber and Carcanet, and we support them through a number of initiatives helping them to establish themselves in the literary and publishing world, such as internships, editorial opportunities and showcasing events.