New ‘Kathryn Bevis Prize’ to celebrate the best poem from Hampshire entered into Winchester Poetry Prize 2024

New ‘Kathryn Bevis Prize’ to celebrate the best poem from Hampshire entered into Winchester Poetry Prize 2024

In Winchester Poetry Prize’s ninth year, the ‘Kathryn Bevis Prize’ has been introduced to celebrate the best poem entered by a writer based in Hampshire. It will be judged by this year’s competition judge, Clare Shaw.

The ‘Kathryn Bevis Prize’ winner will receive £150, plus three one-day poetry workshops with leading poets, as well as a Digital Poetry Retreat of five days with Costa Prize Winner Jonathan Edwards – courtesy of The Writing School Online.

Kathryn Bevis was a much-loved poet and poetry teacher, former Hampshire Poet Laureate, and founder of The Writing School Online. 

In the last year, Kathryn’s poems won the Wales Poetry Award, the inaugural Crysse Morrison Award, the Second Light Poetry Competition, and co-won both the Mairtín Crawford Award for Poetry and the Poetry Society Members’ Competition. During her life Kathryn designed and delivered poetry workshops for adults online and in mental health settings, substance-misuse recovery settings, and prisons, as well as teaching for Arvon. 

Her debut pamphlet Flamingo (Seren, 2022) was one of the Poetry Society’s ‘Books of the Year’ for 2022 and shortlisted for the Saboteur Award for Best Poetry Pamphlet, 2022. ‘My body tells me that she’s filing for divorce’ was shortlisted for the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem – Written – 2023. Her acclaimed debut collection The Butterfly House (Seren, 2024) was published prior to her death earlier this year.

Ewan Monaghan of The Writing School comments:  “Kathryn has been at the heart of the poetry community in Hampshire for years and has brought poetry to many new writers both in the classroom and in less traditional educational settings, such as her work with prisons… Her poems dealing with her own cancer will become long-lived part of the English canon and are some of the most humane and beautiful reflections on mortality written in this century.  For those reasons we are utterly delighted to support the renaming of the Hampshire Prize, to recognise Kathryn’s incredible body of work on and off the page.”

The ‘Kathryn Bevis Prize’ is designed to offer a year of development opportunities and coaching to help the winner of the Kathryn Bevis Prize to develop their poetic career, just as Kathryn supported so many new writers to develop their own talent. 

The Winchester Poetry Prize 2024 winners, including the Kathryn Bevis Prize winner, will be announced live at a prize-giving ceremony as part of Winchester Poetry Day on Saturday 5th October at The ARC, Winchester. All longlisted poems will be read live, and published in a commemorative anthology available to purchase on the day. 

Winchester Poetry Prize is an annual competition that attracts writers of all abilities from all over the world. The competition closes at 23:59 on 31 July 2024. Poems can be submitted by email or by post. 

Further details, including guidelines and how to enter can be found on the website:

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