The Forward Prizes, sponsored by Bookmark, will be awarded at a ceremony at London’s Southbank Centre on 21 September 2017. The categories are:
The Forward Prize for Best Collection
£10,000 sponsored by Bookmark
The Felix Dennis Prize for Best First Collection
£5,000 sponsored by the Estate of Felix Dennis
The Forward Prize for Best Single Poem
£1,000 sponsored by Bookmark
The Forward Book of Poetry
An anthology of the year’s best poetry will be compiled from the poems entered for the Forward Prizes.
The journalist and broadcaster Andrew Marr will chair the jury of the 2017 Forward Prizes for Poetry alongside artist Chris Riddell, poet-critic Sandeep Parmar and the poets Mona Arshi and Ian Duhig. Find out more about the judges.
The Forward Prizes for Poetry are the most coveted awards for poetry published in Britain and Ireland: they have played a key role in bringing contemporary poetry to the attention of the wider public for over a quarter of a century. They were set up in 1992 by philanthropist William Sieghart to celebrate excellence in poetry and increase its audience, and are awarded to published poets for work in print in the last year. The three prizes – £10,000 for Best Collection, £5,000 for Best First Collection and £1,000 for Best Single Poem – are unique in honouring both the work of established poets and the debuts of brilliant unknowns. Past Forward Prizes winners include Claudia Rankine, Thom Gunn, Seamus Heaney, Alice Oswald, Ted Hughes, Carol Ann Duffy and Kathleen Jamie.
In 2016 Vahni Capildeo received the Forward Prize for Best Collection, Tiphanie Yanique the Felix Dennis Prize for Best First Collection and Sasha Dugdale received the Forward Prize for Best Single Poem.
Submissions for the Forward Prizes for Poetry 2017 are now closed. Judges are reading the entries and the shortlist will be announced in June.
The Forward Prizes for Best First Collection and Best Collection are open to books published or due to be published between 1 October the preceding year and 30 September the entry year.
The Forward Prize for Best Single Poem is open to poems published in a magazine, online journal or which have won a competition, between 25 March the preceding year and 24 March the entry year.