The Flambard Poetry Prize


First prize: £1000

Second prize: £250


We are very pleased to announce the 2015 Flambard Poetry Prize, which continues to honour the achievements of Flambard Press and the inspiration of founders Margaret and Peter Lewis. Between 1990 and 2012, Flambard Press published an acclaimed range of poetry and fiction, helping to nurture many emergent and established writers regionally and nationally. It was recognised as one of the finest small independent presses in the UK.

The Flambard Prize is awarded annually to the best group of five poems submitted by a poet who has not yet published a single-authored pamphlet or collection. Each poem should be no longer than 40 lines.

The cost of entry is £5 per group of five poems.

The closing date for the 2015 competition is:
1st September 2015.

Entries will be judged by Cynthia Fuller and Jacob Polley.

Entries can be made via the Newcastle University WebStore or by posting hard copies to:
Newcastle Centre for the Literary Arts,
Percy Building,
Newcastle University,
Newcastle Upon Tyne,

Payment should be made online or by enclosing a cheque made payable to "University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne" with your entries.

If you have any further questions, please email NCLA at


The Judges:

Cynthia Fuller was born in Kent in 1948, and has lived in various places including Aberdeen for eight years. She moved to the North East in 1980. She has two grown up sons.

She worked freelance in Adult and Higher Education for many years, teaching literature and creative writing, and running writing workshops with different groups in the community. She has taught creative writing for Leeds University and the Open University, and worked as a poetry editor for the magazine Writing Women for 12 years. She has also edited several anthologies including The Poetry Cure with Julia Darling (Bloodaxe, 2005) and North by North-East with Andy Croft (Iron Press, 2006).

She has had five books of poems published by Flambard Press: Moving Towards Light (1992); Instructions for the Desert (1996); Only a Small Boat (2001); Jack’s Letters Home (2006); Background Music (2009). Her most recent collection, Estuary, is published by Red Squirrel Press.


Jacob Polley was born in Carlisle, Cumbria. He is the author of three acclaimed books of poems, The Brink (2003), Little Gods (2006) and The Havocs (2012), all published by Picador, UK. He received an Eric Gregory Award in 2002, and both The Brink and The Havocs were shortlisted for the T.S. Eliot Prize.

In 2011, he was Arts Queensland’s poet-in-residence, and he was Visiting Fellow Commoner in the Arts at Trinity College, Cambridge, 2005-7. He has also held residencies at the Civitella Ranieri Foundation and at the Wordsworth Trust.

In 2004, he was named one of the ‘Next Generation’ of the twenty best new poets in Britain. His first novel, Talk of the Town won the 2010 Somerset Maugham Award.



The Flambard Poetry Prize is proudly sponsored by The Friends of Newcastle University Library


Competition rules:


Each poem submitted must be no more than 40 lines long. The title is not included in the line count.

All entries are judged anonymously: do not include your name on the document.

Entries can be on any subject and written in any style or form.

Entrants may enter any number of groups of up to five poems.

Entrants may withdraw entries from the competition, but entry fees will not be refunded.

The deadline for entries is 12 midnight (BST) on 1st September 2015. Any entries arriving after this time will not be considered.


The Prize is open to writers resident in the UK who have not yet published or self-published a single-authored pamphlet or collection in any language or territory worldwide. By entering the competition, you confirm that you are a UK resident and have not previously published.

Entries must be entirely the work of the entrant and by submitting you are confirming that all work is your own.

The poems entered must never have been published, self-published, published on any website, blog or online forum, broadcast, nor have won or been placed (as in 2nd, 3rd, runner-up, etc.) in any other competition.

Simultaneous submissions are not accepted.

Entries submitted posthumously or on behalf of another person will not be eligible.


£5 for each group of up to five poems to be paid via the NCLA webstore or cheque made out to "University of Newcastle upon Tyne".

Entry format

Entries must be written in English.

Poems to be single-spaced and a line count noted at the top of each poem, or at the beginning of the document.

Entries must show no name, address or identifying marks other than the title. For postal entries, please include your name and contact details (ideally including an email address) on a separate covering letter.

Online entries should be a single file containing all five poems, to be submitted online once the entry fee is paid.

The file type of online entries must be either a .doc, .docx, .rft, .pdf or .txt file.

Under no circumstances can alterations be made to poems once entered.


Worldwide copyright of each entry remains with the author, but NCLA may seek persmission to publish winning and shortlisted entries online and in a printed anthology.

Judging & results

Prizewinners will be invited to an award ceremony on 5th November 2015.

The judges' decision is final and no individual correspondence can be entered into.