Jon Stallworthy Poetry Prize

Jon Stallworthy Poetry Prize 2016 | Wolfson College, University of Oxford


After Jon Stallworthy’s death in 2014 the President of Wolfson College, Professor Dame Hermione Lee, made a proposal to honour his memory as a poet, and as a much-valued Fellow of the College, by setting up a ‘Jon Stallworthy Poetry Prize’. This prize was to give an opportunity for Oxford postgraduate students to submit their works in an annual competition, to run alongside the Newdigate Prize, which is open to undergraduate poets at the University.

The theme chosen for the first, 2016 Jon Stallworthy Poetry Prize, was taken from the title of one of Seamus Heaney’s collections, Seeing Things (1991). Graduate students were invited to submit up to three poems, none of them more than forty lines long; the prize was administered by the English Faculty. The competition judges were the poets Bernard O’Donoghue (English Faculty and Wadham College) and Simon Armitage (Professor of Poetry at the University of Oxford). The award ceremony took place at Wolfson College on 18 January 2016, on what would have been Jon’s 81st birthday.

We were commissioned to create a small print run of 50 copies of those poems shortlisted for the 2016 prize using hand binding, letterpress printing and fine quality materials.

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