Enter our children’s poetry competition with BBC Radio Suffolk!

In collaboration with BBC Radio Suffolk, we are thrilled to announce the launch of our inaugural poetry competition, inviting children from across Suffolk aged 7-11 to unleash their creativity and share their poetic talent on the theme of the environment. Listen back to the announcement here.

poetry competiton

We have a rich history of hosting some of the most amazing poets in Britain, including the late, great Benjamin Zephaniah, Poet Laureate Simon Armitage, Carol Ann Duffy, Salena Godden, and punk poet Dr John Cooper Clarke, who returns to the festival this year.

The overall winner will have the extraordinary opportunity to open the festival by reading their winning poem on our stunning Waterfront Stage.

How to Enter

Young poets aged 7-11 across Suffolk are invited to submit their original poems on the theme of the environment from Monday 3rd June until Friday 28th June at 10pm. This competition is a celebration of imagination and expression, welcoming entries that captivate, inspire, and move the judges.

The poem should be no longer than 200 words and convey the entrant’s passion for the beautiful world that we live in.

Luke Wright performing at Latitude in 2023

Luke Wright performing at Latitude in 2023

Meet the Judges

The panel of judges includes:

Kirsty Taylor: Arts Curator for Latitude, with a keen eye for exceptional talent and creativity. Kirsty programmes all the arts performances, including comedy, podcasts, theatre, visual arts, and dance.

Kirsty said: “Latitude Festival is thrilled to launch our poetry competition in collaboration with BBC Radio Suffolk. We can’t wait to see how young people interpret our theme of the environment, to experience that vision through their words, and to bring our winner’s words from page to stage.”

Luke Wright: For over twenty-five years, East Anglian poet Luke Wright has built up a reputation for being one of Britain’s most popular live poets. He has won an unprecedented four Saboteur Awards (national awards for spoken word), a Stage Award, and a Fringe First. He’s sold out shows across the world and regularly tours with John Cooper Clarke and The Libertines. He has performed at every Latitude and returns this year with “Joy,” a collection of poems that ponder the nature of happiness and the joys of everyday life through his vibrant and urgent storytelling.

Luke said, “I can’t wait to read your poems and discover a new generation of East Anglian poetry talent.”

Angelle Joseph: Angelle Joseph is an artist, community worker, DJ and broadcaster. Underpinning all these hats she wears, she is passionate about storytelling, music and media. Her background started in spoken word and rap, and on the journey to becoming a music artist, fell in love with radio. She has been supporting musicians and young talent across Suffolk and Norfolk via BBC Introducing and her local radio show, and has been hosting the annual Celebration week of young talent at Snape Maltings. When she finds the time, you can find her across the nation, presenting on BBC Radio 1, 1Xtra or 6 Music.

Angelle said: “I’m really looking forward to hearing the words shared by the young people and hearing what they are passionate about. It’s such a great way to connect voices and hear a young person’s perspective on something as broad as the environment.”

Sarah Lilley: Sarah presents the Daytime show 10:00 – 14:00 on BBC Radio Suffolk. With a long career in local radio, Sarah is a well-known voice in the county. She is passionate about Suffolk and the people that live here and feels really privileged to be able to be a friend to the listeners and share their incredible stories every day on her programme.

Sarah said about judging, “As a mum with two little girls, I have a pretty good idea of the wonderful insight children have on the world. I can’t wait to see where their creativity will take them and what perspective we can gain from them on this important issue through their poetry. I’m excited to be part of a judging panel that will give its winner such an incredible opportunity. An experience and memory that I’m sure will last a lifetime.”

The Finalists

Winners will be announced on the 11th July. Three finalists will be invited to attend the Latitude Festival with their families. The overall winner will have the extraordinary opportunity to open the festival on Latitude’s Waterfront Stage, giving them an incredible opportunity to showcase their poetic talent to a large audience. Additionally, all three finalists’ poems will be published on Latitude’s website and be broadcast on BBC Radio Suffolk, celebrating the diverse voices of young poets.

For more details and to submit your entry, head to the link below.

Unleash your creativity and let your words soar!